EventsCo-Op Live: Resignation and delays for Manchester’s flagship new venue

Co-Op Live: Resignation and delays for Manchester’s flagship new venue

The general manager of Manchester’s £365 million Co-op Live Arena has resigned shortly after the venue’s anticipated opening date. 

Gary Roden’s departure follows a series of controversies and setbacks surrounding the new arena, which boasts a capacity of 23,500, making it the largest indoor venue in the UK.

Facing criticism for his remarks regarding grassroots venues in the UK, he went on to reject proposals for a £1 ticket levy aimed at supporting grassroots music initiatives.

In response to Roden’s comments, Co-op Live released a statement expressing a differing stance, affirming their dedication to supporting grassroots music both in Manchester and beyond.

His resignation coincides with multiple delays in the venue’s opening, reportedly due to power supply issues and last-minute construction work. 

Despite efforts to complete the venue in time for its scheduled opening on April 20, contractors were still on-site on the day, scrambling to finish preparations.

Thousands of ticket holders were notified of event cancellations mere hours before the doors were set to open for the venue’s inaugural event featuring Rick Astley. 

Subsequent events headlined by comedian Peter Kay were also cancelled, with further cancellations announced for upcoming shows, including a performance by The Black Keys and rescheduled Peter Kay shows.

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Words: James John / Image Credit: Visit Manchester