Page last updated at 12:52 GMT, Tuesday, 31 March 2009 13:52 UK

Chopper city's design capital bid

Raleigh Chopper
The city is home to the Raleigh Chopper

Nottingham, home of the Raleigh Chopper, is bidding to become the World Design Capital in 2012.

A group of Chopper bikes, which were first made in the city in 1967, were ridden around the Old Market Square as the bid was unveiled on Tuesday.

The city council, the Arts Council and Nottingham Trent University are behind the application to the International Design Alliance (IDA).

It is estimated that the bidding process alone will cost £80,000.

City councillor Malcolm Wood said the bid would boost the local economy.

He said: "Our aspiration to achieve this status puts down a clear marker for furthering Nottingham's strengths in design.

"Culture and creativity are a vital aspect of our societies and this award will help us further raise our profile and reputation at an international level as a diverse and cultural city."

Design talent

The application is also being endorsed by Nottingham-born designer Paul Smith, who hopes it will encourage young designers.

"It is fantastic to have such a vast area of design talent within the city covering many aspects of design.

"The city has in the past and is currently benefiting from fantastic regeneration, including many new and exciting buildings, again offering opportunities for existing and new creative industries to flourish," he said.

One of the city's most iconic design works is the 60m (197ft) tall steel spire structure at the University of Nottingham's Jubilee campus.

Raleigh, ended its 100-year tradition of bike making in the city in 2002 when production shifted to Asia but it still has a distribution centre in Eastwood.

Turin was the first World Design Capital in 2008 and Seoul has been given mantle for 2010.

It is not yet known which other cities Nottingham will be up against in the competition.


Famous design names from Nottingham include Boots, Raleigh and Paul Smith.

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