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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 December 2006, 09:44 GMT
City's 800th party plans unveiled
Fireworks light up the skyline and Liverpool Cathedral
The year will kick off with a New Year firework display
Celebrations for Liverpool's 800th birthday in 2007 will include a look back at its role in the slave trade and a commemoration of its abolition.

The year will kick off with a New Year firework display in the city centre, and will culminate in Liverpool 800 Day on 28 August.

The day will celebrate Liverpool's first Charter by King John in 1207.

Other events include the re-opening of a renovated St George's Hall and the introduction of a new coat of arms.

The hall's re-opening will be marked with bells across the city being rung, including at both cathedrals, on the municipal clocks and ships' sirens.

St George's Hall
St George's Hall will be officially re-opened in 2007
The city will also host the Royal Variety Performance and a major retrospective of British pop artist Peter Blake at Tate Liverpool.

A new opera will be staged in Liverpool by internationally-renowned composer James MacMillan.

Council Leader Warren Bradley said it was "the perfect platform to showcase the city's renaissance".

The city is preparing for its year as European Capital of Culture in 2008.

Jason Harborow, Chief Executive of Liverpool Culture Company, said: ''The calendar of events for 2007 is hugely impressive - and manages to strike a balance of thought-provoking art, mixed with major populist celebrations.

"I'm delighted that it also reflects the diversity and heritage of all our communities, which is a great testament to the continuing culture of tolerance that being a world port cultivated.''

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