Today was a really proud day as Milton Keynes European City of Sport 2020 was launched on the world. This followed months of work by both the sports team at Milton Keynes Council and HeawardSports Ltd. in crafting an extremely detailed bid for consideration by the awarding body ACES Europe.
The award which has most recently been held in the UK by great cities like Coventry in 2019, Bristol in 2017 and Stoke-on-Trent in 2016.
Whilst the award doesn’t come with an associated grant, past winners have seen all sorts of benefits, not least an increased ability to secure funds to help develop a wide range of sports projects.
Given the Brexit debate, some people may find themselves asking what’s the point? The answer is thankfully very simple: would you pull out of the European Football Championships or indeed any other major sporting event due to Brexit? Whatever your view on Brexit, sport is thankfully largely outside of this kind of political debate. This is a view that ACES Europe have readily confirmed, as they see Brexit as having no direct impact on the UK’s involvement in European sport or awards such as theirs.
Milton Keynes European City of Sport 2020 is already attracting lots of positive publicity for MK. Up until the end of 2020 and possibly beyond, the award should make a huge difference to both participation in sport and physical activity in MK. It is also a powerful tool to promote MK’s position on the national, European and world stage!
When complete the mammoth bid jointly prepared by ourselves and Vicki Clarke from MK Council, assisted by graphic design specialists Marketing bi Design, was over 200 pages long. It’s development involved an input from many individuals and organisations from across MK. Central to this was a drive to ensure we told real the story of MK. Milton Keynes is one of the UK’s most unique city’s and critically to the bids success was explaining this plus it’s exceptional sporting and cultural pedigree.
MK and especially Milton Keynes European City of Sport 2020 is not all about concrete cows and roundabouts and as ACES discovered on their assessment visit. MK is instead a city of fantastic design, and amazing technology/innovation with a historic connection to both sport and the arts! Where else can you find robotic shopping deliveries, driverless cars and thousands of miles of off road cycleways combined with some of the UK’s most impressive sports facilities, medal winning athletes and an arts programme any capital city should be proud of! MK not only has all this, but it is also a great place to live and one of the UK’s most economically successful locations!
Left: John Mainwaring – Marketing Bi Design, centre holding a copy of the bid Vicki Clarke – MK Council, right Andrew Heaward, MD HeawardSports Ltd. taken at the formal presentation of the bid to the ACES Europe assessment delegation last month in MK.
The Milton Keynes European City of Sport 2020 bid
Working on MK’s bid was the second time members of the HeawardSports Ltd. team have be involved in a successful ACES, European City of Sport bid, having worked on the Stoke-on-Trent bid and its subsequent delivery programme. This experience makes HeawardSports Ltd. unique as possibly the only UK based consultancy with experience in helping to win this award twice!
If you are interested in finding out more about the European City of Sport award and how you can secure this, or indeed one of ACES other fantastic awards for your local area, get in touch!
We wish everyone in MK well in the lead up to, and during their year as European City of Sport in 2020. We are absolutely sure 2020 will be amazing! Whatever happens one thing is certain, we will be following your progress with great interest and intense pride!