Speaking in Waterford City today, Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada called on the public in Kilkenny, Waterford and Wexford to support the South East bid for European Capital of Culture status in 2020. Ní Riada met with the team behind the bid at the head of a Sinn Féin delegation that included Kilkenny County Councillor Kathleen Funchion, Wexford County Councillor Johnny and Councillor John Hearne from Waterford.
Liadh Ní Riada said:
“For thirty years the European Union has designated one or more cities as European Capital of Culture for a given year, providing an opportunity to showcase the best of local, national and European culture. In 2020 Ireland will have the chance to host the European Capital, and in a break with tradition Counties Kilkenny, Waterford and Wexford are jointly presenting a bid.
“I want to commend the bid team, drawn jointly from the three local authorities, for their foresight, initiative and ongoing hard work in preparing a strong, competitive bid for the honour.
“Drawing on the deep cultural roots of the region, as well as showcasing its contemporary music and arts, the bid will seek to put the South East on the cultural map, and has the potential to give a much needed boost to the region’s economy.
“The South East has huge potential. Despite being neglected by successive governments over the years the region has a wealth of resources, both physical and cultural, that put it in an excellent position to be European Capital of Culture in 2020.
“In the end the decision will lie with a twelve-person jury comprised of Irish and European cultural advisors, but I would urge the public in Kilkenny, Waterford and Wexford to row in behind the bid."