Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

The World at Our Feet; Bosses Mark Bid Handover

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

The World at Our Feet; Bosses Mark Bid Handover

Article excerpt

Byline: Adam Jupp

REGIONAL business bosses turned out to celebrate the handover of England's bid to stage the World Cup.

If successful, at least eight games would be played in the North East, with both Sunderland and Newcastle Gateshead confirmed as host cities.

That would give our economy an estimated pounds 60m boost due to the hundreds of thousands of fans who would jet in to follow ths eir home nations.

Former England captain David Beckham led a delegation of FA officials who handed over the bid document to FIFA in Zurich, Switzerland.

Meanwhile, special events were held on both Wearside and Tyneside.

At St James' Park, leading figures from the worlds of business, politics and sport heard what elements of Newcastle Gateshead's own bid to the FA, which led to the city being selected as a host location, had been included in England's application. Newcastle City Council deputy leader Coun David Faulkner told the audience that three fan parks would be set up at Exhibition Park, Newcastle Racecourse and Saltwell Park, Gateshead.

He reiterated the key theme of "football at the heart of the city," saying Tyneside is unique in having its main soccer stadium in such a central location.

Coun Faulkner said: "Today is a celebration - England 2018 has been wowed by our bid and that's thanks to the support of business leaders across the North East.

"Not only is football physically at the heart of our twin cities, it is in the hearts of our people. We are renowned for our welcoming nature and that must remain a strong theme in our future work.

"While the official England bid has now been submitted to FIFA we have seven months of continued lobbying of FIFA officials and working with our local communities to demonstrate our support for England 2018 - together we will bring World Cup football to the North East. …

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