Who is Bradford Live?

Led by Lee Craven, a Bradford businessman, Bradford Live is a group of experts dedicated to finding a modern viable end use for the former Odeon building. The key people are:

Peter Angier – auditorium consultant (Carr & Angier);
Tim Ronalds – architect (Tim Ronalds Architects);
Nick Russell and Tristan Pople – business and funding specialists (IPW…);
Andy Toohey – structural engineer (Price and Myers);
Paul Gillieron – acoustic engineer (Paul Gillieron Acoustic Design);
Andy Jarvis – services engineer (E3 Consulting Engineers);
John Burgess and Mike Briffett – cost engineering consultants (Davis Langdon).


What is Bradford Live’s plan?

To restore the original auditorium size of the former Odeon, and create a state-of-the-art venue for live performances, particularly of amplified music. The other parts of the former Odeon – the ballroom, restaurant and towers – would also be restored.


How many people would a restored auditorium hold?

3,500 fully seated; up to 4,000 with stalls standing.


Will such a venue compete with Leeds Arena and St George’s Hall?

No, Bradford Live’s capacity would make it a mid-size venue, fitting between the 13,500 capacity Leeds Arena and the 1,500 capacity of St George’s Hall.


Is there a market demand for a venue of this size?

Yes, there is a shortage of mid-size venues and the music industry increasingly relies on income brought through touring rather than record sales.


Where is the nearest venue of a similar size?

The Manchester Apollo.


Who would run the venue?

A major commercial venue operator would be appointed to manage the venue.


How many events per year would the venue host?

Between 150 – 200 for the main auditorium, with additional smaller events hosted in the former ballroom.


How much will it cost to convert the building?

We anticipate a full conversion cost of £18-20m


How would the money be raised to pay for the conversion?

We expect to use a public/private finance model similar to the ones that our team members have developed and used for the Leeds Arena and York Barbican.


Would the building remain in public ownership?

We do anticipate public sector involvement and the final model used would be that which ensures optimum investment in the building, to the benefit of the venue itself and Bradford city centre generally.


Would the Council need to subsidise the venue?

No. The venue would be run on commercial terms by a private operator, who would take a long-term lease on the building.