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Plans to build UK’s largest indoor arena in Manchester have been revealed

What do you think?

Jamie Roberts

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The Oak View Group

Manchester could be home to the UK’s largest indoor arena if ambitious new plans are approved.

The proposals would see a huge arena built next to the Etihad Stadium, and with a capacity of up to 23,500 it would overtake both the Manchester Arena (21,000) and London’s 02 Arena (20,000) to take the crown as the country’s biggest.

It would cost £350 million to build, which would make it Europe’s most expensive arena, and it’s projected to create roughly 3,500 jobs during construction and over 1,000 new jobs once completed, the Manchester Evening News reports.

The Oak View Group

It’s main focus will be big music tours, with a huge standing section that could fit 10,000 people, and the people behind the project hope to one day host the Brit Awards there – potentially stealing the event from London for the first time ever.

The American firm behind the project, the Oak View Group (OVG), also claim they’ll be ‘aggressive’ in their attempts to bring a whole host of different events to Manchester, like basketball, boxing, tennis, MMA and ice hockey.

If planning approval is given – a planning application is set to be submitted ‘in the coming weeks’ – the group say it would take three years to build, with the possibility of the first event happening as early as 2023.

Matthew Hartley / Flickr

In terms of competition with the Manchester Arena, OVG claim our city can sustain two arenas as we’re a ‘cultural capital’, adding that it’s ‘not designed to eliminate the current arena but to compliment the demand in the area.’

If the new arena is constructed, it would mean Manchester is home to the UK’s two biggest arenas.

What do you think? Is this a good idea, or is the existing arena enough?

News

Boris Johnson issues warning to anyone planning on going to the pub this weekend

Urging the public to be ‘safe’.

Alex Watson

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Boris Johnson has issued a warning to pub-goers this weekend at this Friday’s Downing Street press conference. 

It comes as this weekend sees the biggest easing of lockdown, with the reopening of the hospitality industry such as pubs, restaurants, bars and cafes. 

The Prime Minister addressed the country on Friday’s Downing Street press conference urging the public to act safely. 

At the briefing, Mr Johnson urged the public to act responsibly as lockdown restrictions are lifted this weekend.

He said: “I know everyone will be looking forward to the relaxation of national restrictions. Businesses have put in a heroic effect to prepare their venues for this reopening, to work out a way to trade which keeps customers safe. “

“The success of these businesses and economic health of the country is dependent on every single one of us acting responsibly.

“We must not let them down. Lockdown only succeeded in controlling the virus because everyone worked together. We will only succeed in reopening if everyone works together again.

“We are not out of the woods yet.”

Seth Weisfeld/Unsplash

Venues will be monitoring and limiting numbers with many opening up new areas outside. Most places are also operating with a pre-booking system and in some cases, ordering via apps and paying contactless.

You can see a list of the restaurants opening in Manchester this weekend here.

The Prime Minister warned that if the public don’t adhere to social distancing guidelines sensibly, then the government ‘won’t hesitate’ to reintroduce strict measures.

He said: “If it starts running out of control again – this Government will not hesitate in putting on the breaks and reimposing restrictions.

“Anyone who flouts social distancing is not only putting us all at risk but letting down businesses and workers.

“As we take this next step – our biggest step on our road to recovery – I urge the British people to do so safely.”

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Pubs can reopen from 6am tomorrow morning, the government confirms

JUST IN.

Proper Manchester

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Pubs can officially open their doors from 6am tomorrow morning, the government has confirmed.

Pubs and bars can finally reopen after lockdown tomorrow, Saturday July 4th, and they can get started very early.

According to Downing Street, this has been put in place to stop pubs from ‘opening at midnight’.

While some police forces, like Devon and Cornwall, have said that there will be a two hour limit on staying in a pub, Number 10 has said this rule wouldn’t be implemented across the country.

They said that it would be up to different forces to implement their own rules, adding that coronavirus regulations won’t limit the amount of time people can spend in pubs and restaurants.

Talking about the new rules, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “What [the regulations] do is put in place the 30-person limit on gatherings in private dwellings and outdoor spaces where not in a Covid 19-secure environment.


“The regulations also keep in place a list of premises that must remain closed and that includes nightclubs, nail bars and salons, indoor play areas, gyms, conference centres and exhibition halls.

“Those regulations mostly come into force at 12.01am on Saturday July 4th.

“The reopening of pubs and bars specifically comes into force at 6am. That would just be in the event anybody would attempt to try to open at midnight.”

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Gyms can finally reopen ‘in a couple of weeks’, Boris Johnson announces

Just in…

Alex Watson

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LBC

Boris Johnson has said that gyms will be able to reopen in the next few weeks.

Speaking on LBC this morning, the Prime Minister said: “We are going to reopen gyms as soon as we can do it in a Covid-secure way and I think that the date for reopening gyms at the moment, if we can do it, is in just a couple of weeks’ time.

“The best way forward for the country is to get the economy moving again. We want to get every part of our industry, including theatres, that are so vital.”

During the interview, Boris was asked why people can go to pubs and restaurants but not the gym. He replied: “People, I think, listening to this debate do know the answer to that, and that is to stop the spread of the disease.”

The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Oliver Dowden, wrote on Twitter that: “Many people keen to hit the gym & keeping Britain fit is key in Covid battle.

“We’ve made lots of progress & I know steps businesses have taken to make their spaces & equipment safe. Subject to public health, our aspiration is to reopen gyms & leisure facilities in mid-July.”

Huw Edwards, the chief executive of UK Active, which represents thousands of gyms and leisure centres, said: “Many people will be understandably frustrated by the decision not to reopen the fitness and leisure sector from 4 July”.

He added: “Our sector’s safety standards are among the highest in Europe, where other nations have already reopened their gyms and leisure facilities safely.

“We have invited Government and health officials to visit any of the hundreds of gym and leisure centre show sites across the country, and witness how facilities would operate with thorough social distancing measures and hygiene standards in place.

“Any further delay to our reopening will threaten our nation’s recovery from Covid-19. With obesity the second largest cause of hospitalisation from this virus, gyms and leisure centres are equipped to not only combat Covid-19, but to support rehabilitation for those recovering from the virus.”

In lockdown personal trainers have been able to provide one-on-one training with clients outside and at a distance.

Many gyms have issued statements that they are ready to open, including PureGym, The Gym and David Lloyd.

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