Eurovision 2023: Will the song contest be held in Glasgow?

There has been speculation that the UK could host the Eurovision song contest in 2023.

This year’s Eurovision Song Contest was won by Ukraine, following a flood of public support for their entry from Kalush Orchestra, with the UK coming in second.

Since then there has been speculation that the 2023 contest could be held in the UK, if Ukraine can’t host due to the ongoing Russian invasion.

Now it has been confirmed that The Eurovision Song Contest will take place in the UK next year, and Glasgow is in the running to host.

In a statement, The European Broadcasting Union, who are in talks with the BBC said: “The decision was guided by the EBU's responsibility to ensure the conditions are met to guarantee the safety and security of everyone working and participating in the event, the planning of which needs to begin immediately in the host country.”

Cities within the UK that want to host, such as Manchester, Aberdeen and London, will have to prove they have the right facilities and go through a bidding process.

In June, speculation mounted that Glasgow may host the contest, as SuperTV wrote on Twitter: “NEW 🚨 Whilst it is all but confirmed that the BBC will host #Eurovision 2023 if Ukraine can’t - after the Spanish broadcaster stated so - it has now been confirmed that if the BBC do, it will be held in Glasgow, Scotland”.

According to Eurovision Fun, Jose Manuel Perez Tornero,the president of Spain’s national broadcaster all but confirmed the UK will host Eurovision if Ukraine can’t.

He said: “We don’t want to be left with the mirage of a good result. We are going to go out to win next time. We were also interested in organising 2023 Eurovision. But if Ukraine resigns, it will be the BBC that organises it.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted her support for Glasgow to host, writing: “We wish @Eurovision could be in Ukraine but understand that in circumstances this isn’t possible. However, I can think of a perfect venue on banks of the River Clyde!! @scotgov is happy to discuss with BBC, @GlasgowCC @EBU_HQ and others”

But then Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Ukraine deserves to host next year’s Eurovision song contest and that he hopes it will be able to do so despite the ongoing war with Russia.

While Glasgow itself hasn’t played host to Eurovision, it did have a starring role in the Netflix film Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga, starring Will Ferrell and Rachel McAdams. An exterior shot of the Hydro was used as the contest’s location - despite it being set in Edinburgh. Some scenes were also filmed at Glasgow Airport.

Also, it was reported last month that Eurovision fans spotted a blacked-out section of the Glasgow OVO Hydro calendar in May 2023, adding fuel to the speculation.