Over £6 million is set to be approved by regional leaders tomorrow (14 March) to help drive economic growth through West Yorkshire’s creative industries.

The majority of the investment (£5.7 million) will contribute to the delivery of Bradford UK City of Culture 2025 – a landmark year of cultural events, festivals and celebrations to showcase the vibrant communities of Bradford, and West Yorkshire’s dynamic creative industries, to the world.

Previous cities with the prestigious title, including Coventry and Hull, have benefited from a surge of local and global visitors as well as significant economic growth. Next year's cultural celebrations are expected to have a similar, major impact for Bradford and the wider region.

Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin said: “West Yorkshire is the place to be for culture and creativity – more so now than ever, with the epic Bradford UK City of Culture 2025 just months away.

“This will give us a once-in-a-generation opportunity to grow our economy and show the world what we’ve got - from our vibrant, heritage-rich hotspots, to our gold standard creative talent.

“Investing in culture is a key part of building a stronger, brighter West Yorkshire that works for all.”

To further boost tourism in the region, £500,000 is also set to be approved to drive forward initiatives for West Yorkshire’s newly established Local Visitor Economy Partnership.

The partnership, approved by VisitEngland in July, aims to capitalise on the upcoming cultural opportunities for the region whilst increasing the awareness of West Yorkshire as a top destination for tourists, businesses and people to visit, live and work.

Supporting the development of events, transport and accommodation, the new investment is expected to boost visitor numbers, grow the economy, and support new skills and jobs.

The proposed £6.2 million investment supports the Mayor’s pledge to deliver a ‘Creative New Deal’ for West Yorkshire, and follows the launch of her flagship ‘You Can Make It Here’ programme - designed to support businesses and freelancers, and make the industry more accessible for all.