ANTICIPATION is mounting in Sunderland as campaigners wait to learn whether or not they have clinched the UK City of Culture title in 2021.

The city’s bid to win the prestigious title, worth £107million to Wearside, will be announced live on BBC One’s The One Show from 7pm to 7.30pm this evening.

A bid team has travelled to Hull where they will be making a final presentation to the judges this morning ahead of the final result being revealed.

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The bid is being considered alongside others from Coventry, Paisley, Swansea and Stoke before a winner is announced in Hull – the present City of Culture.

Rebecca Ball, Director of Sunderland 2021, said: “We’re excited and nervous about the announcement, but we’re also very proud of our bid.

“Hundreds of people fed into it, and thousands upon thousands of people have supported it.

“The bid document submitted in late September was strong, ambitious and deliverable. We then hosted a successful visit to the city by four of the judges in early November, and the last stage was this morning’s presentation.”

She added: “On behalf of the bid team I’d like to thank each and every company, organisation and individual who has supported us – the backing we’ve had has been so passionate and sometimes so overwhelming it has been a humbling experience.

“I’d also like to thank the Bid Steering Group who have offered sage advice and again been very supportive.

“Win or lose tonight, the momentum built behind our bid to become City of Culture will not be lost.

“It is the culmination of months of work by a dedicated team and a committed partnership that have galvanised the city behind the bid.

“The city deserves this honour and would deliver a celebration of arts and culture of which the country would be proud.”

The bid has been overseen by Sunderland Culture, whose core partners are Sunderland City Council, the University of Sunderland and Sunderland Music, Arts and Culture (MAC) Trust.

The UK City of Culture title is designed to use culture for economic and social regeneration and to raise the profile of arts and creativity, helping develop a broader arts and culture sector.