We are Coventry

Meet the bid team

David Burbidge CBE DL


David Burbidge is Chairman of Burbidge & Son Ltd in Coventry. David is a former Chairman of the Belgrade Theatre and served on the main Board of the Royal Shakespeare Company until recently. He is a Deputy Lieutenant and former High Sheriff of the West Midlands. He was recently awarded a CBE for services to cultural philanthropy in the West Midlands – particularly Coventry and Warwickshire.

Find out more here

Laura McMillan


Since leaving University with a Drama degree, Laura has lived in Coventry. She worked in the Sales and Marketing department of Warwick Castle before moving to the Marketing department of the Royal Shakespeare Company. As manager of the Coventry City of Culture Trust, Laura is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the bidding process.



Ian Cook, Popbangcolour

Ian Cook, known as Popbangcolour, is a contemporary British artist, and tenant at Fargo Village in Coventry’s creative quarter of the city. Cook is known for his unique method of solely painting using radio controlled cars, tyres and wheels.

Over the past 9 years, Popbangcolour has been creating artworks with cars, creating for car manufacturers, brands and individuals. This has included achieving a Guinness World Record painting with a full sized car as well as earning a Blue Peter badge!

The Popbangcolour studio is located at Fargo Village, where people can visit to see the latest artworks created, as well as see a range of artworks produced. Talking about the Coventry City of Culture Bid, Cook said:

“Having recently moved to Coventry, it’s a really exciting project to be involved with, Coventry has a wealth of Culture, and having the studio at Fargo Village at this time is having a really positive impact on my business, brand and creative process of producing bespoke artworks, commissions and projects”

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Rashid Bhayat

I am backing the bid as I believe that we truly are a great City of Culture. Being Coventry-born, I have seen many wonderful examples of the culture on offer in the city.

Through sport to music, we know how to involve the diverse community we are blessed to have in our great city.

As the founder and Executive Director of the Positive Youth Foundation, I am working closely with my colleagues to ensure that we support local partners to reach out to as many young people as we can; allowing their voice to be heard and responded to as part of our bid to become the UK City of Culture in 2021.

To date, we have already seen an incredible response by young people, who are hungry to know more and get involved in the bid process. Our Changing Trax programme runs weekly sessions for young people to get involved in high-quality music making opportunities.

We will be developing a number of work streams over the next few months to bring the ideas of young people to life.

As a member of the Executive Group, I am looking forward to helping to shape the bid, which will keep Coventry in its place as leading city in the UK.

For further information, I can be contacted at info@positiveyouthfoundation.org

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