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Wednesday, 3 October, 2001, 05:46 GMT 06:46 UK
Riots clash with culture title
National Museum of Photography, Film and Television
The Photography, Film and TV Museum is interactive
The board set up to prepare Bradford's bid to become the European capital of culture is beginning work on its case.

The inaugural meeting on Wednesday will address the fact that the recent disturbances in the city could harm the bid.

Leading British film producer Lord Puttnam agreed last month to chair the city's capital of culture partnership board.

Bradford's ethnic diversity and its industrial heritage are being upheld as cultural attractions.

Curry in pan
Bradford is home to famous curry houses
In 1998, Bradford was one of the first British cities to declare it would compete for the honour bestowed annually by the European Commission.

Member states take it in turn to nominate a cultural capital, and it falls to the UK in 2008 - the first time since Glasgow was named European City of Culture in 1990.

Bids have to be in by March 2002, with the winner chosen the following year.

The title is widely viewed as a ticket to economic regeneration.

New investment

Bradford's National Museum of Photography, Film and Television bills itself as a major interactive experience.

It benefited from a 16m refit in 1999.

Salt's Mill houses Bradford-born David Hockney's art gallery and is set in a site seeking world heritage status.

Communications companies have in recent years based themselves in the 19th Century buildings dating back to the city's textiles heyday.

The Bronte tourist industry thrives in nearby Haworth, while Ilkley hosts a literature festival.

But backers of the Bradford bid must face the issues of the recent riots fuelled by racial tensions and inner-city deprivation.

Strong competition

The campaign was well-advanced before the riots happened.

"Bradford has focused its attention on solving the problems that come with different communities living together," said Paul Brookes, appointed to head the project.

"Having our efforts put in the European spotlight can only be a positive thing."

Other aspirants to the title are Cardiff, Belfast, Bristol, Liverpool, Inverness, Birmingham, Newcastle and Gateshead, Canterbury, Brighton, Oxford, Norwich, East London and Milton Keynes.

Click here to go to BBC Bradford Online
See also:

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Hopes of European culture title
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Bradford's new image
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