Youth leaders from 29 countries back Coventry's bid to be UK City of Culture

Forty Lions Clubs youth leaders – aged 18 to 21 – visited the city as part of the Lions Club International’s centenary celebrations and were shown Coventry Transport Museum, Coventry Cathedral and the Ricoh Arena.

During the day’s activities they also heard about Coventry’s efforts to be UK City of Culture in 2021 and how the city’s own youth and diverse communities are playing a major role in the bidding process.

The leaders, from Austria to Australia, from Belarus to Brazil and from China to India also met a range of dignitaries from the area and posed for pictures in Broadgate.

Ravinder Sandhu, president of Mercia Lions, said Coventry had come together to show young people from around the world exactly what the city had to offer.

He said:

The Lions Clubs exist to serve people around the world based on five themes – youth, environment, vision, hunger and diabetes. “There are more than 1.45 million members worldwide in 210 countries, serving around 200 million people. This visit to the UK is part of the Lions Clubs 100th anniversary celebrations and the youth leaders are going to a range of cities and towns around the country. 
But we have worked really hard and have had great support from the whole city in making this a real day to remember so that our visitors take away a great impression of Coventry and tell people back home that this is the place to come to visit. The fact that Coventry is on the shortlist to be UK City of Culture in 2021 added an extra dimension to the day and it was great to have so many young people from all over the world showing their support.

David Burbidge CBE DL, Chairman of the Coventry City of Culture Trust, said:

Coventry is a young, diverse and international city so this visit was an absolutely perfect showcase for youth leaders from around the world. Of course, you can only give a small flavour of the city in a very short visit but the Lions Clubs of Coventry Mercia managed to squeeze a lot of activities in and had great support from the whole of Coventry. It’s exactly that kind of effort that is needed to see us crowned as UK City of Culture in 2021.

Coventry City Council, The University of Warwick, and Coventry University are Principal Partners of the bid and are providing significant support. The Ricoh Arena is Bid Sponsor while Jaguar Land Rover, Adient, Friargate, Coventry Building Society, the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce, Birmingham Airport, PET-Xi, SCC, Pertemps, CEF (City Electrical Factors) and Listers are also Bid Development Sponsors.

To show your support for Coventry’s bid on social media, go to @Coventry2021 on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. For more information, log onto www.coventry2021.co.uk

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