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Freedom Chair to be made Honorary Burgess

Professor Graham Chesters, Chair of Freedom Festival Arts Trust and one of Hull’s true cultural leaders is today to be made an Honorary Burgess by Hull City Council when he is granted the Lord Mayor and Admiral of the Humber Award.

He will be presented with an official scroll by the Lord Mayor, Councillor Steve Wilson, on Thursday 18 July for his promotion of education and culture in Hull.

Councillor Stephen Brady, Leader of Hull City Council, said: “Graham is something of an unsung hero in his advocacy for our great city of Hull.

“He has had a hugely beneficial impact on academia, culture and tourism through his leadership and championing of all that Hull has to offer to its communities and the wider world and I am delighted that he is being granted the Honorary Burgess award.”

Jenny Howard-Coombes, Executive Director of Freedom Festival Arts Trust and Joint CEO said: "This recognition couldn't be more well deserved. Graham may not be a household name but he is Hull's true champion of culture. 

"A recognition of the power of arts and culture as an enabler of change has led Graham to commit much of his life, voluntarily, to increasing access to the arts in a city where, pre-City of Culture, engagement was extremely low. He has and continues to lead and influence many of the region’s most successful cultural and visitor destination experiences and has helped foster new ways of working for the cultural sector, leading innovative cross sector partnerships between arts, industry, academia and public sector. 

"Graham has changed the way people experience, engage and connect with culture and place, contributing significantly to the cultural renaissance of Hull and establishing the city as a true, world class visitor destination."