JUDGES are set to arrive in Southampton this week as they decide which area will be crowned the UK City of Culture 2025.

If the city is successful, Southampton is set to host a whole year of celebrations.

Bradford, County Durham and Wrexham County Borough are also on the shortlist.

With the judges' arrival just 48 hours away, we asked Echo readers why they think the city should take the culture crown.

READ MORE: 'Moment of celebration' - Southampton into final four in race for UK City of Culture

Emily Indah said: "Everyone has a story everyone comes from different backgrounds from all around the world and am proud to be a part of it - communities grow there’s so much culture to share and experience.

"There is something for everyone."

David Richman said he "doesn't know where to start" and highlighted the city's art, museums, the docks, historical parks, and sports.

Sue Mintram mentioned the diversity in the city, saying: "We have practically every nationality living here and we've got lots of history. We used to be known as the gateway to England."

READ MORE: Weston Park pupils throw support behind UK City of Culture 2025 bid

Mary Biles said that the city should "definitely" win, adding that she is "Southampton born and bred" and "can't imagine living anywhere else".

A number of readers also referenced the city's history, including the Old Walls at Bargate, the Titanic and the Mayflower.

It comes after pupils from Weston Park Primary School in Newton Road prepare to welcome the judges on Friday.

The children showed off a dazzling display of smiles and cheered loudly in a practice run.

The reported benefits of winning the culture title include a year in the cultural spotlight, with hundreds of events encouraging participation in the arts as well as a growth for tourism.

Previous winners have said attracted millions of pounds in additional investment to help boost regeneration.

The winner is due to be announced this year in Coventry.

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