THE TRANSFORMATION of the former Bradford Odeon cinema into a 4,000-capacity live music venue has edged a step closer, after the project secured £4 million in funding.
Created by a consortium of local businessmen, Bradford Live bought the cinema, which had been closed since 2000, four years ago and has been attempting to raise funds for its renovation. An additional £4m has now been confirmed from the Government’s Northern Cultural Regeneration Fund.
“We would like to thank all those who backed the bid which has benefited from cross party support,” says Bradford Live’s programme manager Kirsten Branston. “The redevelopment of this iconic building will be a magnificent legacy project for the Great Exhibition of the North.”
Last year, Birmingham-based arena operator NEC Group agreed to run the venue on a 30-year lease and invest £2m (see LIVE UK issue 212).
“This latest funding is a great vote of confidence in the project and warmly welcomed as another important step towards bringing the vision to life,” says NEC MD Phil Mead.
The venue is due to open in 2020 and expected to stage around 225 events a year.