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NewcastleGateshead announced as winners to host Great Exhibition of the North 2018

Newcastle and Gateshead have been selected to host a major exhibition showcasing art, design and innovation from the north of England.

The area has been selected by the government to host the £5m Great Exhibition of the North in 2018.

It was chosen above three other shortlisted bidders – Sheffield, Bradford and Blackpool.

Former Chancellor George Osborne came up with the idea as part of his Northern Powerhouse package.

Culture Secretary Karen Bradley said she was won over by Newcastle and Gateshead’s “ambition”, including the organisers’ estimate that the exhibition will attract three million people.

“That level of ambition really did stand out,” she told BBC News. “But that doesn’t mean this is just for Newcastle-Gateshead.”

The exhibition is said to “reveal to the world how the North of England’s great art and culture, design and innovation has shaped all our lives and is building the economy of tomorrow. The dramatic story of the North, told in imaginative and powerful ways, will instil local pride and inspire people to pursue exciting lives and careers in the North. By attracting visitors from near and far, it will transform global perceptions of Northern England and showcase the opportunities and possibilities available to all.”

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