Humberside

Hull City of Culture: More than 3,000 people volunteer

Projection on Ferens Art gallery
Image caption The city's arts venues, including the Ferens Art Galley, have been refurbished

More than 3,000 people have applied to become volunteers helping out with Hull's year as UK City of Culture.

The year-long arts festival will begin with a fireworks display over the Humber Estuary on New Year's Day.

Organisers said 1,000 volunteers had been trained and they hoped to recruit a total of 4,000 throughout the year.

Volunteers will help greet visitors and assist during events, including the Turner Prize and a concert by Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott.

The leader of Hull Council, Stephen Brady, said hosting City of Culture would have a "huge impact" on the city's economy.

He said more than £1bn of commercial investment had been attracted to Hull over the past year.

'Kick away'

Mr Brady said the authority was planning on "using culture to bring good jobs to the city".

It is spending £100m on infrastructure projects and expanding arts venues such as the Ferens Art Gallery and the city's main theatre.

Mr Brady said he hoped the national exposure would change people's perceptions of Hull.

"I always knew that the city would at last be recognised for the skills that they've got in the city and the enthusiasm," he said.

"It's been very, very difficult for us in Hull to actually try and kick away this feeling of negativity from the outside about this city."

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