Next year’s Eurovision Song Contest could be held in the UK after the competition’s governing body concluded it isn’t possible Ukraine to safely host the event. The country has already hosted the event twice and May’s win by Kalush Orchestra would normally have seen the event staged there for a third time.
Work to design and stage the event typically takes 12 months of preparation involving hundreds of technical and production workers.
In a statement, the European Broadcasting Union confirmed it has “been exploring options for the hosting of next year’s competition with Ukraine’s public broadcaster UA:PBC, who previously staged the event in 2017 and 2005.”
However following a comprehensive review, it has “with deep regret concluded” that the necessary security and operational requirements cannot be fulfilled by UA:PBC. The EBU says it shares the “sadness and disappointment” arising from that decision.
The statement adds that the EBU is now in discussions with the BBC to potentially host the 2023 contest after Sam Ryder came second with the UK’s best result in years. If the talks are successful, it will be the ninth time the UK has hosted the contest – the last time was 1998 following Katrina and The Waves’ win the previous year with Love Shine A Light.
The BBC said: “We have seen the announcement from the EBU. Clearly these aren’t a set of circumstances that anyone would want. Following their decision, we will of course discuss the BBC hosting the Eurovision Song Contest.”
Despite the decision to move to the contest, the EBU said “it is our full intention that Ukraine’s win will be reflected in next year’s shows. This will be a priority for us in our discussions with the eventual hosts.”