Band on the Wall has been home to live music for the people of Manchester for over 200 years, and 2020 has presented the biggest crisis in our history.
You may have heard about our long-standing plans to expand Band on the Wall and restore the derelict ‘Cocozza’ building to the rear of the venue (see here and here). Before the COVID-19 crisis closed the entire music industry back in March, we had intended to run a full programme of gigs until the end of 2020, throw a huge party and temporarily close the venue until September 2021, when we re-open a bigger, better Band on the Wall following the building works.
COVID-19 means we’ve had to change our plans. We have taken the difficult but necessary decision to close early.
We’ll still be producing gigs and tours in other venues across the country when it is safe to do so, and we look forward to welcoming everyone back to Band on the Wall next year.
The lack of trade during Spring 2020, and the earlier than planned closure has put Band on the Wall under incredible financial strain. This means, sadly we have had no other option but to restructure the company. From September 2020 a total of 26 positions will be made redundant, including our entire casual workforce.
Band on the Wall is a not-for-profit registered charity. Funding for the restoration works has come from Arts Council England, the National Lottery Heritage Fund and foundation grants, including the Foyle Foundation and a mix of other funders. All funds are ring-fenced against the project. There is no way for us to use these funds against staff wages.
This has been an incredibly painful and upsetting decision but sadly necessary to save the organisation, and with it a 200-year-old music venue from immediate collapse.
We’d like to thank our amazing staff for the hard work they’ve put in over the last decade since we re-opened back in 2009.