Kent

Medway city status bid submitted

Rochester
Image caption The council believes being recognised as a city will bring investment and jobs to the area

Medway Council has said it has all the "key credentials" as it submits its bid for city status.

The honorary title will be granted to just one town as part of The Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations next year.

The Medway towns - Rochester, Strood, Chatham, Gillingham and Rainham - have launched a joint bid for the title.

The council believes being recognised as a city rather than a series of towns will bring investment and jobs to the area.

'Strongest possible case'

In its bid, Medway points out it has a population of about 260,000 and is larger than 20 existing UK cities.

Councillor Rodney Chambers, the leader of the Tory-run council, said the city had the "strongest possible case".

Medway made unsuccessful bids in 2000 and 2002. On the last occasion it lost out to Brighton and Hove.

The winning bid is expected to be announced in February 2012.

Other towns competing for city status include Middlesbrough, Reading, Bolton, Swindon, Chelmsford, Stockport, Perth, Gateshead, Ballymena, Guildford, Southend-on-sea, Ipswich, Wrexham, Croydon and St Austell.

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