IRVINE has an Ayrshire rival in its bid to win city status.

At a meeting last week, South Ayrshire Council announced they would bid for city status too.

But rather than just the main town of Ayr, they are considering a wider bid for the whole of South Ayrshire, citing precedents in England.

Competition is likely to be intense, particularly with the organisers encouraging councils to keep their spending to a minimum.

New cities are set to be created in the UK next year as part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. North Ayrshire Council announced their bid two weeks ago.

Provost Iain Clarkson said: “I think it’s absolutely brilliant.

“It’s an opportunity for Irvine to put itself on the map.”