Congratulations Hull, UK City of Culture 2017. The celebrations will begin tonight and events are planned every day of the year.
PR guru Mark Hibbert says: “Hull will be one of 2017’s hottest visitor destinations. It is emerging once again as one of the great northern cities with a multi-million pound investment in the re-birth of Yorkshire’s maritime city.
“Not only will visitors enjoy arts and culture events every day of the year, but Hull is also undergoing a major physical transformation, including new-look public spaces as well as refurbished venues and architecture – with the city’s rich history at its heart.”
Here’s Mark’s Top 10 highlights of Hull, UK City of Culture 2017:
1. Everyone Back to Ours
Hull throws open its doors to the world with 365 days of culture in 2017. The year will be split into four seasons, inspired by the city, its people and its place in the world: Made in Hull (January – March); Roots & Routes (April – June); Freedom (July – September) and Tell the World (October – December).
2. Fishy footsteps
Hull’s Fish Trail is 25 years old in 2017. Find the fish and explore the city via an A-Z of fish sculptures! 41 pieces of sculpture make up this impressive piece of public art with each representing the actual size of fish, from a tiny anchovy to a 10ft ray. Spot an electric eel outside the electricity sub station… and a shark outside a bank!
3. Appealing Fruit
Why not take a stroll along the Marina to the retro Fruit Market, home to an abundance of new creative and cultural venues? A £80m redevelopment has transformed this historic area with galleries, cafes and high quality restaurants, breathing new life into former fruit trade units and creating a thriving new visitor destination.
4. Visit the Land of Green Ginger
Stroll the cobbled streets of historic Old Town and see a different side of the city. Turn back the clock to the English Civil War and visit the alleged plotting parlour at Ye Olde White Harte or the spot at which Charles I was refused entry to the city of Hull – Beverley Gate. The exposed remains of the Gate are currently being redeveloped as a destination spot and new public space for visitors. Old town is also home to the world’s smallest window, at the George Hotel, and The Land of Green Ginger, a street whose strange name remains a mystery.
5. Museum free-for-all
Visit the free Museums Quarter in Hull’s Old Town. Journey back 235 million years to encounter sea monsters, Romans and a life-sized woolly mammoth at the Hull and East Riding Museum of Archaeology. The Streetlife Museum of Transport brings history to life with all the sights, sounds and smells of the past. Visit the birthplace of William Wilberforce and find out about the transatlantic slave trade in Wilberforce House or experience the hazardous life of deep-sea fishing abroad the city’s last sidewinder trawler, the Arctic Corsair.
6. Dive into The Deep
One of the most spectacular aquariums in the world and home to a whopping 3,500 fish including a pair of Green Sawfish, sharks, rays and a colony of Gentoo penguins. Perhaps Hull’s most iconic building, The Deep tells the amazing story of the world’s oceans through stunning marine life, interactive and audio-visual presentations making it a fun-filled family day out for all ages.
7. A city reborn
Not only will visitors enjoy arts and culture events every day of the year in 2017, but Hull is also undergoing a major physical transformation too, including new-look public spaces as well as refurbished venues and architecture – with the city’s rich history at its heart.
8. See world-class art
Alongside new art and culture experiences, visitors to Hull in 2017 will also be able to see some of the world’s finest artworks when the refurbished Ferens Art Gallery re-opens, hosting the Turner Prize 2017 in September, but also major masterpieces, including important loans from The National Gallery in London and Royal Collection Trust.
9. Light up the city
Not surprisingly, art is integral to the city’s redevelopment for its ‘Big Year’ with acclaimed artists, such as Michael Pinsky and poet Shane Rhodes, creating imaginative installations, while renowned lighting specialist Nayan Kulkarni will highlight historic buildings and sculptures with his permanent installation The Golden Hour.
10. Cross the Humber Bridge… to music
It was the world’s longest single span suspension bridge when it opened and more than 100,000 vehicles use it each week, but there’s also a walkway offering a chance to stroll across to really appreciate this impressive structure. From April 2017, as part of the Hull UK City of Culture programme, the Orchestra and Chorus of Opera North will turn the iconic structure into a living piece of music, transforming it into a massive soundscape.