Internationally-famous singer Zayn Malik has been revealed as Bradford’s 2025 ambassador ahead of an exciting year of culture. 

The Bradford-born singer will be jumping into his role by taking part in special projects that will celebrate all that the area has to offer.

Zayn, who grew up in East Bowling, still has strong connections to the city - having used several locations in the district to plug his single, Love Like This.

In the run-up to Bradford’s UK City of Culture year, Zayn - along with the people of Bradford - will be celebrating the special occasion.

The former One Direction star turned solo musician said: “Bradford is and always will be home to me. It’s a very special place and I’m happy to see it being recognised as the UK City of Culture for 2025.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Zayn Malik wearing a hat featuring the new Bradford 2025 logoZayn Malik wearing a hat featuring the new Bradford 2025 logo (Image: Bradford 2025)

“There are some exciting projects I am taking part in throughout the year that I can’t wait to share with you.

“I’ve travelled all over the world but my roots and family remain in Bradford. Now we can celebrate this great city and the people who live and work here with the rest of the world.”

It comes ahead of a programme of electrifying events in 2024 - from a parade of life-size scarlet giraffes to unique exhibitions.

Hundreds of people from across the district came together to hear the latest news about Bradford’s City of Culture celebrations – including the announcement on Zayn Malik.

UK City of Culture 2025

The special event kickstarts the countdown to Bradford district’s game-changing year.

Since being awarded the title, Bradford 2025 – the charitable organisation leading the development and delivery of Bradford’s year of culture – has secured more than £32m inward investment.

It has come from Bradford Council, the UK Government Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS), Arts Council England and Heritage Lottery Fund, plus a range of financial support from corporate sponsors, trusts and foundations. 

Fundraising for the scale of the bold and ambitious projects is ongoing and will continue throughout 2024, Bradford 2025 said. 

Many of the events for Bradford 2025 are still in the planning stages but the programme will reach across the entire district, it is hoped.

The line-up will include work from local, national and international artists. 

The idea of ‘connectivity’ is a key theme of Bradford 2025, with hopes of strengthening ties with other cities of culture during the same period.

This includes Chemnitz, Germany, which is European City of Culture 2025. 

Several Bradford artists have already visited Germany to participate in a makers' fair and international knowledge exchange. 

Other international partnerships are being developed with the support of the British Council across India, Pakistan, Australia, France, Finland and Indonesia.