Manchester Central notes 91% increase in event enquiries as confidence returns to the sector

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Manchester Central, one of the UK’s leading events venues, has announced a stellar performance in the month since reopening.

The 10,000 capacity venue, which attracts over half a million visitors each year, has handled 88 new event enquiries in the month since reopening, up 28% on June and 91% on May. These come in addition to a further 100 events already booked onto its pipeline for the remainder of 2021.

The international convention centre reopened its doors to large events on 19 July, following 16 months of closure as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

In the month since reopening, the venue has already hosted several performances of this year’s successful Manchester International Festival, and will welcome a combined 7,500 attendees to next month’s Housing2021 and FittedUK conferences, the largest capacities to date for the venue post-Covid.

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Shaun Hinds, CEO, commented,

“After waiting so long for the green light to resume, it was difficult to know how quickly the appetite to get back to live events would return. However, the significant uptick we’ve seen in the volume of enquiries over recent weeks is proof that businesses are eager to get events back on the agenda.”

“We are now fielding enquiries for a varied mix of shows, ranging from large business conferences, through to intimate gatherings, and music and comedy performances such as the Peter Kay’s Dance For Life, which showcases our breadth of expertise in hosting live events.”

“We have also seen strong interest in our hybrid model, where organisers have recognised the power of embracing the digital element of shows to reach wider audiences who can’t be in the immediate vicinity of the event itself, and to cater for those who may not feel ready to return to face to face occasions.”

As part of a sector which adds £30bn into the UK economy annually (pre-Covid), Manchester Central brings £150m into the city in a typical year. For every £1 spent at the venue, on average a further £6 is spent in the wider city, in hotels, restaurants, bars, shops and taxis.

Offering a range of in person, hybrid and virtual events, the venue has installed a TV-quality broadcast studio for podcasts, panels and recitals, in addition to its ‘plug and play’ hybrid solution in its purpose-built 800 seat auditorium, enabling content to be live-streamed to in real-time to maximise audience reach.

Hinds continued,

“This strong and steady growth in confidence in the events sector can only be a good thing for everyone involved in the industry, from the venues themselves to the freelancers, tech specialists and security behind the scenes.”

“The sector is an ecosystem reliant on each other, and we are thrilled that we are contributing to this with a pipeline of events which now runs well into 2023 and beyond.”

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