City bid

Crawley applied for city status in 2022 – the 75th anniversary of the new town.

The town entered the Civic Honours competition, part of The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

The Crawley bid

Crawley’s bid was based around the central message of ‘75 years ago, you made Crawley a New Town. In that time, we have grown to become a regional powerhouse. Imagine what we can achieve if you made us a New City’.

Crawley is a success story that encapsulates all that is good about post-war Britain. The Platinum Jubilee marked the 75th anniversary of the establishment of Crawley as a New Town, which has the motto ‘I grow and I rejoice’ – and how it has grown!  

This ancient Sussex market town, with a population of 9,000 in 1947, is transformed and now home to more than 114,000 residents, a £6bn economy and Gatwick Airport, the world’s busiest single runway airport.

The benefits of entering the competition included the opportunity to:

  • Celebrate and promote the town’s strengths, including our economic power, Gatwick Airport being in the borough, our sense of community and exciting, long-term regeneration programme
  • Rebuild optimism and pride after suffering the worst economic impacts of the pandemic
  • Have a wider discussion about what Crawley can become