LEEDS 2023 will spotlight how creativity and greater access to cultural experiences can open opportunities for all. The landmark year will be punctuated by twelve major signature projects – original works produced by LEEDS 2023 – and include hundreds of events and activities where communities, companies and a host of volunteers will come together in an inclusive city-wide celebration.
As part of the partnership, Burberry will support a number of creative learning initiatives next summer, including Smeaton300 – a creative events programme inspired by the legacy of East Leeds civil engineer and astronomer, John Smeaton, which will unite inventive minds across engineering, science, industry and the arts. Smeaton300 is an original idea developed by Foxglove, enabled by Leeds City Council in partnership with LEEDS 2023.
Supporting creative education is a natural continuation of the brand’s ongoing partnership with schools throughout the region, which has included industry-leading initiatives like ‘Burberry Inspire’. Supported by The Burberry Foundation, the ‘Burberry Inspire’ programme brought students together with leading arts and cultural institutions – including Leeds Young Film, Northern Ballet and The Hepworth Wakefield – to empower young people to immerse themselves in the arts and uncover their creative potential.
As a modern British luxury brand with roots in West Yorkshire – including an office in Leeds, a factory in Castleford, and a mill in Keighley – Burberry is proud to celebrate a city so profoundly connected to its business. With a focus on creativity, culture, diversity and inclusion, LEEDS 2023 echoes the brand’s ethos that creativity opens spaces.
Rob Blomfield, VP of Global Business Services, Burberry commented: ‘We’re delighted to be supporting LEEDS 2023 with this special year-long event. The West Yorkshire region is a hub of creativity and innovation and has played such a profound part in shaping our business. We are proud to be nurturing young people and celebrating the region through both the work of The Burberry Foundation and our partnership with the LEEDS 2023 team.’
Abigail Scott Paul, Director of External Relations and Strategic Partnerships commented: ‘Having Burberry on board is fantastic; it is such an iconic brand and the company is intrinsically linked to the textile and manufacturing heritage of this part of West Yorkshire. The whole Burberry team has been so supportive – with dozens of team members joining our volunteer programme and offering their skills and expertise for our creative learning initiatives. Aligning the brand with Smeaton300 made perfect sense, and I’m sure the project will help inspire a new generation of home-grown creative thinkers and engineers.’
Supported by more than forty Burberry volunteers, Part One of the LEEDS 2023 programme will commence with an event called ‘The Awakening’ at Headingley Stadium on 7 January. It will feature renowned acts from the world of music, poetry, dance, comedy and more.
About LEEDS 2023
- LEEDS 2023’s ambition is to deliver a transformational year of creative experiences connecting and benefiting people now and into the future.
- The planned programme will celebrate and transform the City’s identity locally, nationally and internationally – creating a lasting legacy of economic and social impact.
- LEEDS 2023 is run by the Leeds Culture Trust, an independent charity set up in 2019 by Leeds City Council as part of its Culture Strategy and as a response to the cancellation of the UK’s participation in the European Capital of Culture competition.
- Leeds City Council recognises in a number of its key strategies the difference culture and creativity can make to a city and its citizens, and is the principal funder of LEEDS 2023.
- Founded in 1856, Burberry is a modern British luxury brand that is listed on the London Stock Exchange (BRBY.L) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index.
- BURBERRY, the Equestrian Knight Device, the Burberry Check and the Thomas Burberry Monogram and Print are trademarks belonging to Burberry.