Southampton to host cultural programme for UEFA Women’s EURO 2022

Southampton is one of ten local authorities across England that will host a vibrant arts programme as part of the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 in England this summer

Cultural programme for UEFA Women’s EURO 2022

This is part of an exciting national cultural programme supported by £800,000 funding from Arts Council England, thanks to National Lottery players.

Running alongside the tournament from 6-31 July and delivered in collaboration with the ten local authorities, across nine Host Cities - Brighton & Hove, London, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Rotherham, Sheffield, Southampton, Trafford and Wigan & Leigh - the cultural programme is set to reach nearly three million people and invite sports audiences and participants to engage with culture at an important moment for the country. 

Three specially commissioned projects led by artist Emma Smith, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Idle Women, will share the rich history of women’s football and its players and harness culture to encourage more people, particularly women and girls, to be inspired by the competition.

There will also be the opportunity for the public to create an original anthem to celebrate UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 in England, expressing the passion evident in the women's football community through music.

The arts programme will be managed by The Football Association (FA), the national governing body of football in England. It will be the first time the organisation has run such a programme alongside a major tournament and it hopes to establish female role models for both girls and boys through the arts.

Over 26 action-packed days, 31 UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 matches will be played by 16 teams across nine English cities from 6-31 July. A record number of fans are set to attend in person with a further 250 million across the world watching the action unfold on TV. It promises to be the biggest women’s European sporting event in history. Three Group Stage games will be played in Southampton on Thursday 7 July (Norway vs Northern Ireland), Monday 11 July (Austria vs Northern Ireland) and Friday 15 July (Northern Ireland vs England).

National Lottery Project Grants is the Arts Council’s open access programme for arts, museums and libraries projects. The fund supports thousands of individual artists, community and cultural organisations thanks to National Lottery investment.  

National Lottery players raise £30 million for good causes each week, funding arts, heritage, sports, voluntary and charity projects around the UK. Over £43 billion has been raised for Good Causes since the National Lottery began in 1994.

Councillor Spiros Vassiliou, Cabinet Member for Communities, Culture & Heritage, Southampton City Council, said: “As we bid to become the UK City of Culture 2025 we are very excited that Southampton is a host city for the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 and the buzz the arts programme, alongside the games, will bring to the city to encourage more women and girls, to be inspired by the competition.”

Phil Gibby, Arts Council England, South West, Area Director, said: "We're thrilled that Southampton is one of nine cities working with The Football Association to deliver an exciting cultural programme for the UEFA Women's EURO 2022 this summer, which we've supported thanks to £800,000 of National Lottery investment. The project will no doubt add another string to Southampton's bow as a strong contender for UK City of Culture 2025. 

“We are extremely pleased to support this vibrant cultural programme, which will give more people in the city, particularly women and girls, a significant opportunity to get creative and engage with culture.”

Chris Bryant, Tournament Director UEFA Women’s EURO 2022, said: “UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 is set to be the biggest women’s European sporting event in history. This significant funding from the National Lottery and the chance to work with Arts Council England (ACE) provides us with the opportunity to deliver a programme that celebrates culture and encourages more people, particularly women and girls, to be inspired by the tournament.

“We are delighted to be working with such prestigious artists and organisations on bringing this programme to life. As we work towards tournament kick off on 6 July we will be reaching out to local artists, musicians and community groups via our host city partnerships to share in the moment and deliver a programme of events in each region.

“By bringing football and arts together under one project we can attract new audiences to each and leave behind a legacy for future generations.”

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