Going for the finish line: local and international cooperation

Eger is in cooperation with 11 surrounding settlements and the Bükk National Park in the tender to win the title of „European Capital of Culture 2023”. The deadline for submissions was December 20, 2017. Eger’s tender was put together after a long preparatory period, drawing on the experience of local and international cultural forums and workshops. Lajos Koltai, artistic director of the tender, coordinated the efforts of the fine art, music, film and architectural teams to generate the tender’s artistic mission statement; Eger’s submission incorporates several local and international joint ventures. An excellent bid has been produced which is currently being translated; on completion it will be presented to the members of the international jury. The 12-person body of experts, will convene at the start of next year to pre-select the cities which may compete in the final selection process taking place in the second half of 2018. The winners will be announced at the end of next year.



The last stage of the tender calls for the initial efforts at cooperation of the preparatory stages to be made official. László Habis, the Mayor of Eger, signed the document of joint preparation for the tender together with the 11 civic leaders of the participating the regional settlements in Egerszalók on November 27. These settlements in the 2023 tender are: Andornaktálya, Bélapátfalva, Demjén, Egerszalók, Felsőtárkány, Maklár, Noszvaj, Novaj, Ostoros, Szarvaskő and Szilvásvárad.

Besides Eger’s more than half a million nights of hospitality annually, the 11 partner towns boast some one million such nights in addition to this, highlighted László Habis, Eger’s Mayor.

Eger’s splendid cultural and historical treasures, together with the marvellous natural assets of the towns surrounding the regional centre are a big draw for visitors. The Mayor of Eger added that the city had signed a cooperative agreement with Eszterházy Károly University as well as with most national cultural institutes and aims to also work with its twin towns abroad in the interest of success.



Ildikó Martonné Adler, Deputy Mayor who is the tender coordinator, has voiced a need for cooperation if the participants are to each share the benefits. At the commencement of the tender process, Eger’s General Assembly set its sights higher than merely formulating a cultural strategy, announcing one of both cultural and community building instead. The main aim was articulated as the cultivation of a discerning audience for cultural values. In addition to the many charms of the city of Eger, the region itself also represents a valuable asset: when it comes to cultural tourism, this area offers enough to keep visitors satisfied for several weeks.

Cooperation with the Directorate of the Bükk National Park
Mayor László Habis and Kálmánné Rónai, director of the Directorate of the Bükk National Park signed the cooperation agreement on November 28.

Prior to signing, director Kálmánné Rónai emphasised: The city of Eger and the Directorate of the Bükk National Park are continuously liaising with each other, the avenues of cooperation have been established. The National Park is headquartered in Eger, participates in the life of the local community and that of the region. However, going beyond the scope of the operation, several further fields of endeavour also link the city and the directorate, which functions as a budgetary body.



Mayor László Habis added that the volume of work between the Local Government and the Directorate of the Bükk National Park has increased considerably; visiting the park, town representatives familiarised themselves with activities linked to the national park. He stressed: Eger aims to be a prime target for tourism, which necessitates the mapping and showcasing of its natural assets. The Directorate of the Bükk National Park is engaged in a thorough, determined effort to affect developments at several locations in the area which will showcase natural assets as genuine attractions. Eger and the surrounding settlements also have a stake in the success of this endeavour.

Eger – besides focussing on its extant attractions – coordinates efforts to showcase such assets in its efforts to attain the status of a prominent touristic region that have already been government-approved or otherwise endorsed. One of these is the sum of over 13 billion forints, made available to Eger courtesy of TOP, The Area and Settlement Development Operative Program; this will fund the renovation of the Prince-Provost’s palace, the reopening of the Helyőrség Community Centre, and General János Lenkey’s birthplace. Renovation of the Serbian Greek orthodox Rác church or of Eszterházy square also feature on this list; the town is growing in assets, said László Habis. All this strengthens the case for Eger, as part of the ECoC tender.



He added: the Government’s Modern Cities Programme also supports our bid to claim the prestigious title of “European Capital of Culture 2023”. Eger’s odds are further improved by its direct motorway link, the construction of the intermodal hub and other transport development features.

The castle’s development is a similar issue as the work is already under way: both the Modern Cities Programme and the National Castle and Fort Programme (GINOP) provide a fitting framework to enable Eger to attain the rank of ECoC city and successfully run for the title of the European year of Culture in 2023.

The above are given further force by the decision on the part of the government which names the Eger Archdiocese as a beneficiary. As a result of this, the Basilica and the Archbishop’s Palace are both to be renovated.

Our efforts to elevate Eger to the status of a celebrated tourist destination incorporates both new developments and the showcasing of existing assets. Eger’s ECoC2023 tender focusses less on investments and more on assets. Our main task is to present an authentic view of the cultural assets in Eger which are worthy of recognition across Europe – said the Mayor of Eger.

Bemutattuk Eger EKF2023 filmjét

Az alkotás semmiképp sem turisztikai szempontok szerint készült, hiszen az EKF 2023 pályázat sem egy turisztikai projekt. A kisfilm létrehozásának oka és célja Eger pályázatának alátámasztása, a főbb sarokpontok megvilágítása egy sajátos, a fiatalokat megszólító, filmes szempontból. Íme.


Elkészült Eger pályázata, melyet 2017 december 18-án, szép formába öntve, angol és magyar nyelven is 20-20 példányban vittek el munkatársaink az Emberi Erőforrások Minisztériumába. A Városháza udvarára spontán módon szervezett találkozón jelen voltak a művészeti munkacsoportok tagjai közül mindazok, akik időt tudtak szakítani egy rövid találkozásra. “Együtt kísértük első útjára” a reményeink szerint sikeres egri pályázatot, az udvarról kigördülő hivatali autót pedig tapssal búcsúztattuk.

Cooperation with the settlements of the region

In response to the Eger Local Government’s initiative, twelve towns signed the cooperation treaty regarding the European Capital of Culture tender application. At the Egerszalók meeting the roles of natural treasures and touristic opportunities were highlighted besides those of culture and tradition. In addition, the wish to foster a love of culture in the youngest generations was voiced.

Eger’s tender is on its way

The ECoC2023 tender application was dispatched on Monday morning. As you will have heard, Eger is aiming to win the title of European Capital of Culture in 2023. Mayor László Habis said that an excellent opportunity has also arisen to revive the city; one example of this is the new Eger youth choir.

“ECOC” at the Eger round table discussion

Participants of the meeting focussed on the review of equal opportunity initiatives in Eger, the European Capital of Culture tender application and the experiences of the Eger Round table of citizens. The meeting, held in the Hall of Citizens, was chaired by Gabriella Bohus Badacsonyiné, who is currently tenured in the position.

Music everywhere

To celebrate World Music Day, the musicians of the city infused the city with the “Mood of ECoC” by performing at surprise spots in Eger. There was music at the bus terminal, on top of the multi-story car park at Katona square, and aboard one of the local buses.

December 20: deadline for tender applications

Eger is on the final lap of preparations for the European Capital of Culture 2023 tender application. Currently, the coordination of events is under way. The tender’s submission deadline is December 20. As determined by the decision of the EU, the title of European Capital of Culture may be awarded to a city from Hungary and one from Great Britain in 2023.

Kövessen minket a Facebookon!

Eger “EKF 2023” (ECOC2023) pályázatának hivatalos Facebook oldalán naponta követheti az eseményeket, híreket, aktualitásokat.


The joint visit of Eger and Leeds to Aarhus, Europe’s current Capital of Culture

The Danish ECoC city invited Eger as the sole Hungarian candidate for a professional meeting.

Botond Rázsi, Deputy Mayor of Eger, took part in a formal discussion in Aarhus, the current Capital of Culture in the middle of September. The workshop, where Finnish, French, Basque, English and Irish representatives were also present, was dedicated to the tender of “European Capital of Culture” and the sharing of the Danish ECoC city’s experiences of the role.

Eger, in its capacity as candidate for “European Capital of Culture 2023” was invited to the discussion by the town currently holding the title of “ECoC”. The event was also attended by the representative of the English city of Leeds, also a candidate for the title of ECoC in 2023. We have mentioned the connection between Leeds and Eger many times already: the two cities have forged strong links while working on the European Capital of Culture programme.

– Now – in the wake of several online conferences and face-to-face meetings – the invitation on Aarhus’ part was the cue for a joint discussion of the aims and possibilities of winning the ECoC title as well as of European culture – declared Botond Rázsi, Deputy Mayor of Eger. Former holders of the ECoC title also spoke at the conference, as did towns who had already won the tender, as well as those who had run, failed to win, but which nonetheless remain open to cultural cooperation. In tandem with representatives of the Directorate General for Education and Culture of the European Commission, they also emphasised the importance of the displaying of the European dimension in tenders as well as of regional cooperation. In addition, all parties suggested that the cities in the running prepare a “Plan B” in case their applications don’t win, as this would signal their commitment to the cause.

The Deputy Mayor also revealed that the meeting in Denmark was organised by the “LIKE city network”, featuring participants from 9 nations, with Eger being the sole one from Hungary.