The prestigious title is a chance to use arts and culture as a catalyst for a citys economic and social regeneration. And of course to raise the profile of the citys creative reputation right across the country.
UK Government Minister Andrew Dunlop said:
The UK City of Culture competition is a fantastic opportunity for the winning city to really put itself on the map. The title is a unique opportunity to drive artistic innovation, bring in visitors, and boost regeneration and economic growth. It would be great to bring the title to Scotland, and I urge Scottish towns and cities to get involved.
Phil Redmond, chair of the competitions independent advisory panel, said:
Having been on the journey from Liverpool 2008, Derry-Londonderry 2013 and now Hull 2017, I am delighted other cities will have the opportunity to bid and build upon the award for 2021.
The launch of the 2021 competition comes in the same month Hull kicks off its year as UK City of Culture 2017. Derry-Londonderry was the first UK City of Culture in 2013.
Cities have till the end of January to register interest, with final bids due by the end of April. A shortlist will be announced in July and the winning city in December.