Cocozza Elevation New Band On The Wall

Band on the Wall secures funding for expansion

Manchester music and arts venue Band on the Wall has secured £1.7m of capital funding from Arts Council England to support its expansion, including upping capacity from 350 to 500, improving education space and remodelling the bar.

Central to the expansion is bringing the derelict Cocozza building to the rear of the property back into use. Inner City Music, the company behind the venue, is currently in final stages of negotiating the purchase of the building, and subject to funding, its façade will be retained as part of the development.

The existing Picturehouse Bar will be remodelled with an external terrace space and will include a second venue designed to host smaller concerts and emerging artists.

The funding will also be used to add additional education facilities including a rooftop AV suite and learning spaces to house the venue’s archive.

Plans for the expansion received consent in October last year. Designed by OMI Architects and managed by Buro Four, the project team also includes cost consultant Simon Fenton Partnership, structural engineer DP2 and building services engineer Progressive Services Design.

Gavin Sharp, chief executive of Inner City Music, said: “Band on the Wall has worked closely with Arts Council England for many years. The welcome news of a successful stage two Capital funding will help transform Band on the Wall into a world-class space for music performance, education and cultural engagement for the people of Manchester and further afield.

“The capital funding will allow Band on the Wall to significantly enhance its facilities for learning and participation activity and performance, and the expanded building will be a space for the public to experience both music from around the world, and participate in programmes that explore and celebrate the rich cultural heritage of the local area.”

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For once a small venue not closing down!

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