Liverpool hires agencies to push year of culture

A trio of agencies have been signed up to promote Liverpool's debt-ridden 2008 European Capital of Culture project.

Four Communications, LD Communications and Bolton & Quinn have been appointed to promote different parts of the year-long programme. Overall fees amount to more than £100,000.

It was revealed in December that Liverpool City Council is £29m in debt, of which £20m is attributed to the festival.

Four Communications is handling national and international consumer and business media. The account was won in a competitive pitch against five agencies including Bell Pottinger North and Weber Shandwick.

Four Communications MD Alun James said: 'The Liverpool Culture Company is under the microscope at the moment, but the key thing for us is to take Liverpool beyond the stereotypes.'

Meanwhile, specialist art and culture agency Bolton & Quinn will promote the numerous arts events that will take place throughout the year. LD Communications is looking after press around the official launch event and the Liverpool Sound Concert in June. All agencies will report to Liverpool Culture Company comms director Paul Newman.

Newman said: 'It is not just events that need PR support, there is the economic spin-off as well. What is it doing for Liverpool, for jobs, regeneration and capital spend? There are so many elements to the story. It is vital to have experts from agencies who work in specific areas.'

The launch event was due to take place this Friday (11 January) featuring Ringo Starr, while Liverpool Sound Concert in June will be headlined by fellow ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney.

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