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Licensing for landmark new Manchester arena advised by Blandy & Blandy

14 March 2024
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The licensing application for a landmark new entertainment arena in Manchester, set to rival New York's Madison Square Garden, has been advised by Thames Valley Law firm Blandy & Blandy.

Oak View Group (OVG), City Football Group (CFG), Harry Styles, and Co-op have joined forces to create Co-op Live, poised to become the UK's largest live entertainment arena with a 23,500 capacity when it opens on April 23.

READ MORE: Blandy & Blandy to open Wokingham Office

On November 10, the site at the Etihad Campus, will host this year's MTV Europe Music Awards (EMA) where performers will include 'Take That'.

Blandy & Blandy said it provided a "significant level" of advice and input over the last 18 months on the premises licensing application, including working with Co-op Live to draft and issue a comprehensive application; liaising with the responsible authorities and preparing Co-op Live for the two day hearing, where ASM Global/AO Arena, Manchester continued to oppose the grant of the new licence.

On March 1, it was revealed by Manchester City Council’s Licensing Authority that Co-op Live's premises licence had been granted.

Sue Dowling, partner at Blandy & Blandy, said: "It has been a great pleasure to be involved in this premises licensing project from start to finish, with passionate clients determined to bring a first-class arena to Manchester.

"After considerable hard work from the whole team (as well as considerable support from those in the community and at the Responsible Authorities), the outcome from Manchester’s Licensing Sub-Committee – a flexible Premises Licence to enable our clients to operate Co-op Live to its maximum potential – was very well-deserved."

Sonny Mallet, senior vice president - legal and business affairs at Oak View Group, added: "Blandy & Blandy have been instrumental in helping us to secure our Premises Licence, supporting our application from the outset with speed, clarity, experience and professionalism."

Co-op Live will be at the Etihad campus and will host live music, sport, comedy, award shows and family entertainment.


Giles Gwinnett is a writer at The Business Magazine. He has been a journalist for more than 20 years and covered a vast array of topics at a range of media settings - in print and online. After his NCTJ newspaper training, he became a reporter in Hampshire before moving to a news agency in Gloucestershire. In recent years, he has been covering the financial markets along with company news for an investor-focused web portal. His many interests include politics, energy and the environment. He lives in Dorset.

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