10th November 2020

Engineering Band on the Wall expansion

Inner City Music Limited, the charity that owns and operates Manchester’s multiple award-winning Band on the Wall, has announced it has appointed City Build as the main contractor to the deliver the expansion of the historic music venue. We will be working alongside them as structural engineers on the project, which has a total value of £3.5 million.

Gavin Sharp, CEO, Inner City Music said: “It means so much to everyone at Band on the Wall to be able to share the good news that our project to expand the venue is another step closer to being realised with the appointment of City Build.

I would like to thank our project team, Buro Four, OMI Architects and Simon Fenton Partnership for their commitment, enthusiasm, transparency and attention to detail throughout which has enabled our Board of Trustees to make the appointment in full confidence.”

Our thanks equally go to our main funding partners, Arts Council England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund, it is their support that has enabled the project to come to life.”

Catherine Mitchell, Director, North Arts Council England said: “I’m pleased that we have been able to support Band on the Wall through capital funding. It is positive to see that during this unprecedented time for the arts and culture sector that organisations are continuing to plan for the future. The expansion of Band on the Wall will not only help secure the long term future of the venue but will increase opportunities for local people to engage in Manchester’s rich musical culture, as well as bringing artists from all the world to the city.”

David Renwick, Director, England, North at The National Lottery Heritage Fund

said: “Band on the Wall is steeped in music and cultural heritage and this project will ensure it is further able to spotlight and share it with Manchester’s ever growing population.”

The project will see the main venue capacity increase from 350 to 500 for headline artists and performances. The bar will be re-modelled and will include an external terrace area. There will also be a smaller performance with 80 capacity on the ground floor.

The learning complex, above the main venue space, will include a rooftop A/V suite, allowing young people and education participants to create new digital work by engaging with international touring artists.

The new learning spaces will be home to Band on the Wall’s improved archive facilities, enabling the organisation to better catalogue its rich library of historical content. Selected archive materials will continue to be exhibited in the venue.

The Cocozza building is one of only a few remaining structures from the days of the Victorian Smithfield Market, the building façade will be saved and fully restored.

Work is due to start on site by before the end of the year with the new venue scheduled to open in Autumn 2021.

Dr. Martin Berry, Managing Director, City Build said: “It is an honour to be appointed to work on the expansion of Band on the Wall. We all know and love the venue and we can’t wait to get started to turn the plans on paper into reality.”

The full team for the project is:

  • Client: Inner City Music Ltd
  • Architect and Contracts Manager on behalf of Inner City Music: OMI Architects
  • Project Manager: Buro Four
  • Cost Consultants: Simon Fenton Partnership
  • Structural Engineers: Civic Engineers
  • MEP Designers: Brentwood Group
Engineering Band on the Wall expansion