The 2023 Eurovision Song Contest will be held in the UK next year, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and the BBC have confirmed.
In a statement, the EBU said it would be held on behalf of this year’s winning broadcaster, Ukraine’s UA: PBC.
A statement from BBC director-general Tim Davie said: “It is a matter of great regret that our colleagues and friends in Ukraine are not able to host the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest.
“Being asked to host the largest and most complex music competition in the world is a great privilege.
The United Kingdom will host #Eurovision 2023! 🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧— Eurovision Song Contest (@Eurovision) July 25, 2022
➡️ Everything you need to know here: https://t.co/qQVS3gierN pic.twitter.com/IpHCA2i4U6
“The BBC is committed to making the event a true reflection of Ukrainian culture alongside showcasing the diversity of British music and creativity.
“The BBC will now begin the process to find a host city to partner with us on delivering one of the most exciting events to come to the UK in 2023.”
Following the announcement, culture secretary Nadine Dorries said: “The Eurovision Song Contest unites people through the power of music and creativity.
“Following a request from the European Broadcasting Union and the Ukrainian authorities, I’m delighted that the BBC has agreed to step in and host next year’s contest.
“I’m just sorry that due to Russia’s continued acts of bloodshed it has not been possible to host the event in Ukraine, where it should be.
“As hosts, the UK will honour the competition’s spirit and diversity, and most importantly, ensure it reflects Ukraine’s recent Eurovision victory and Ukrainian creativity.”
Mykola Chernotytskyi, head of the managing board of Ukrainian broadcaster UA:PBC, said the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest 'will not be in Ukraine but in support of Ukraine' amid Russia's invasion.
Rap group Kalush Orchestra represented the war-torn country with their song 'Stefania' and came out on top in the competition.
Meanwhile, the UK won the jury vote, with the country's strongest finish in decades courtesy of Sam Ryder and his song 'Space Man'.
He finished with 466 points after the public votes were counted, coming second behind Ukraine.
Martin Osterdahl, the Eurovision Song Contest’s executive supervisor, said Ukraine will be celebrated in the next competition despite not hosting the event.
He said: “We’re exceptionally grateful that the BBC has accepted to stage the Eurovision Song Contest in the UK in 2023.
“The BBC has taken on hosting duties for other winning countries on four previous occasions.
“Continuing in this tradition of solidarity, we know that next year’s contest will showcase the creativity and skill of one of Europe’s most experienced public broadcasters whilst ensuring this year’s winners, Ukraine, are celebrated and represented throughout the event.”
Featured Image Credit: Alamy