Paisley awaits UK City of Culture 2021 announcement 

The winning city will be chosen at 7pm on Thursday by UK culture minister John Glen.

The UK's City of Culture 2021 will be announced on Thursday evening.

At 7pm, the announcement will be made by culture minister John Glen from the current city of culture, Hull.

Paisley is up against Coventry, Stoke-on-Trent, Sunderland and Swansea.

Since Paisley launched its bid more than 40,000 people have been involved in the conversation around it - equivalent to around half the population of the town.

It includes 14,000 primary pupils who were given a copy of a specially-commissioned short story by award-winning children's author Ross Mackenzie, and asked to submit their idea for the bid.

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Famous faces from the town to have supported the bid include singer Paolo Nutini, Hollywood actor Gerard Butler and artist John Byrne.

Paisley: Schoolchildren were given a specially commissioned book about the town. Paisley City of Culture

The bid has also been backed by more than 200 businesses, including big names such as Glasgow Airport, intu Braehead, Diageo, WH Malcolm, and Coats PLC, the world's leading thread manufacturer.

The bid also has cross-party political support, with well-attended receptions held at both Holyrood and Westminster sponsored by local politicians.

Renfrewshire Council launched a culture, heritage and events fund to increase capacity among the local creative scene - with demand so high the initial £500,000 investment was topped up to £1m.

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Highlights so far include the stop-motion Paisley-themed Lego animation by local teenage film-maker Morgan Spence, now seen by millions around the world.

Colin Orr, the organiser of the bid, said : "A win for Paisley could result in 4700 new jobs created over a ten-year period.

"It would also generate an estimated £175m economic boost, bring almost one million visitors in 2021, attract investment in infrastructure.

"And it will leave a lasting economic legacy by establishing the town as a visitor destination and a hub for creative industry."

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