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Wednesday, 25 July, 2001, 16:20 GMT 17:20 UK
Welsh towns battle for city status
Newport, south Wales
Newportonians say their home is a city in all but name
Six Welsh towns which missed out on achieving city status as part of millennium celebrations are to mount a second promotion bid.

Wrexham, Newport, Machynlleth, Newtown, Aberystwyth and St Asaph have pledged to make another drive for the award, which could bring huge economic benefits, after the second contest was announced for the Queen's Golden Jubilee.

Aberystwyth
Aberystwyth is a popular student town
The Welsh contenders all failed to secure city status as part of the competition when Inverness, Wolverhampton and Brighton & Hove were awarded the status in December.

One of the towns is sure to be celebrating when the results of the new race are announced early next year, however - Wales has been guaranteed one winner.

The victor must have a "quasi-metropolitan position in its region or sub-region."

And the Queen's main conditions are "notable features, including regional or national significance;" "historical - including royal - features;" and a "forward-looking attitude."

Towns battle

The Lord Chancellor's Department, which is overseeing the competition, sent out letters to interested local authorities outlining the requirements.

A competition to give the Lord Mayorality to a UK city was also launched by the Lord Chancellor, Lord Irvine.

St Asaph deputy mayoress Denise Hodgkinson was confident of her bid.

She said the town was already a cathedral city and the only such city in Wales not to be officially recognised, alongside St David's in Pembrokeshire, the last to benefit from new city status in 1994.

Wrexham's bid last time around hinged on the town being the largest in north Wales and was backed by Cardiff County Council cabinet members and the Archbishop of Wales Alwyn Rice Jones - the former Bishop of St Asaph.

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18 Dec 00 | UK
City winners named
16 Jul 99 | Wales
South Wales help for city bid
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