Former One Direction star Zayn Malik revealed as the ambassador for Bradford’s City of Culture year

“I’ve travelled all over the world but my roots and family remain in Bradford.”

The 31-year-old singer, originally from West Bowling, will act as the main ambassador for Bradford 2025 City of Culture.

The news was announced at Bradford City’s Valley Parade stadium.

As ambassador, Zayn Malik will attend some of the event’s 1,000 shows, exhibitions and events.

In a video message played at Valley Parade, the former One Direction band member said: “Bradford is and always will be home to me. I’ve travelled all over the world but my roots and family remain in Bradford.

“It’s a very special place and I’m happy to see it being recognised as the UK City of Culture for 2025. There are some exciting projects I am taking part in throughout the year that I can’t wait to share with you. Now we can celebrate this great city and the people who live and work here with the rest of the world.”

Shanaz Gulzar, Creative Director of Bradford 2025, said: “In 2024 we’re gearing up for a district-wide cultural programme which will put Bradford on a national and international stage.

“I’m thrilled Bradford’s very own superstar Zayn Malik is joining us on this journey – his creative vision and passion for his home town strongly aligns with our brand values.

“Zayn’s involvement, as well as the three special events in 2024, are just a taste of what’s to come in 2025. This is the start – our countdown has begun.”

Image: Bradford 2025

Events are already being planned in the run up to the event, including French street theatre company Compagnie OFF performing in the city centre on 24 August, and Four Nations: Bradford that will see portraits of people from the city displayed throughout the city in September.

Ryan Sparks, Chief Executive at Bradford City AFC, said: “It is a really huge success for Bradford to have obtained UK City of Culture status for next year.

“We will be carrying wording with a nod to the UK City of Culture below the crest on our playing shirts for the next two seasons, which will be worn with huge pride in what Bradford has accomplished.”

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