THE deputy leader of BCP Council has not ruled out entering a competition to secure city status as part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

Cllr Philip Broadhead said the views of businesses and residents would be "critical" before deciding whether to make a tilt at the honour.

Mayor of Bournemouth David Kelsey said that he would “love Bournemouth to be granted city status” due to the prestige and indirect financial benefits that come along with the award.

It has been nine years since Bournemouth Borough Council was unsuccessful in securing city status and it appears the unitary authority will not be rushing into an entry.

Cllr Broadhead said: “The Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole area is already considered a ‘city region’ by the government in virtue of its size, economy and population of approaching half a million people.

Bournemouth Echo:

BCP Council deputy leader Philip Broadhead

“Whether there is further value in gaining official ‘city status’ is something which we have to explore with our local communities and businesses.

"Their views would be critical to any firm decision on this.”

Bournemouth failed in an attempt to gain city status in the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee year.

In a You-Gov survey conducted in 2012, Bournemouth was the joint most popular choice for city status among the public. Both Bournemouth and Reading scored 12 per-cent of public support.

While Chelmsford in Essex, Perth in Perthshire and St Asaph in Denbighshire gained city status as part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012.

Cllr Kelsey was extremely positive about the what being a city could mean for Bournemouth.

Bournemouth Echo:

The Mayor of Bournemouth, Councillor David Kelsey

"It would be good if Bournemouth became a city," he said.

“It would be good financially, there is a cost implementation to becoming a city but I’m sure the benefits would outweigh that cost.

"But I think we need to wait and see what the residents think and whether they want us to go for city status or not.

“It would mean more recognition for the area and you get more funding and support freely from the government and with everyone’s funding stretched we all need to get as much as we can.”

Formally, there are no advertised benefits of gaining city status with the award being historically more about prestige.

But the mayor did not hold back his enthusiasm.

“I’d love Bournemouth to become a city, it’s my favourite town and I’d love it to become my favourite city.”

The nation is set to celebrate the monarch’s Platinum Jubilee during a special four-day bank holiday weekend from June 2 to June 5, 2022.

In addition to the city status competition, existing cities in the UK can enter a parallel competition for a Lord Mayoralty, or Lord Provostship as it is known in Scotland.

This is a distinction given to a small number of long-established and important cities, entitling the city’s Mayor, or Provost, to be known as the Lord Mayor or Lord Provost during their term of office.

The competition will close on December 8 this year and all valid entries will receive individual consideration on their merits, before recommendations are made to the Queen by ministers.

Would you like to see Bournemouth gain city status? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.