Manchester Prepares For ‘Busiest Day’ Of Music


May 31, 2023

Manchester is shaping up to host its “busiest day”, with headline shows by Coldplay, Arctic Monkeys and Elton John set to be held this weekend.

More than 300,000 concert-goers are expected in the city for shows by Coldplay at the 60,000-cap Etihad Stadium (31 May, 1, 3-4 June), Arctic Monkeys at the 50,000-cap Emirates Old Trafford (2-3 June) and Elton John at the 21,000-cap AO Arena (31 May, 2-3 June).

A free festival, We Invented the Weekend, is also taking place at MediaCity and Salford Quays from 3-4 June, while the first all-Manchester FA Cup Final between Manchester City and Manchester United will go ahead at Wembley Stadium in London on Saturday.

The weekend of events coincides with industrial action on the railways on 2-3 June, with people travelling into Manchester being urged to plan ahead by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM).

“We’re expecting this weekend, particularly Saturday, to be one of the busiest periods of the year in Manchester, with major events taking place and due to rail strikes we expect more people to travel on our region’s roads,” says Sean Dyball, TfGM’s head of customer experience.


“We are expecting major congestion on Saturday and we strongly encourage anyone travelling into the city centre to plan ahead and allow sufficient time for their journeys. People planning to drive should avoid the city centre and consider leaving their vehicle at a Park and Ride and using Metrolink to complete their journey.

“Throughout the weekend we will be constantly updating the customer information available on our website and across our social media channels to help people make informed journey choices, to save them time and avoid disruption to their journey.”

Other events being staged in the city include shows by Ricky Gervais, UB40 and Penn & Teller at O2 Apollo Manchester (cap. 3,500); Ziggy Alberts, North West Calling 2023 and Ice Nine Kills at Manchester Academy (2,600); and The Beat and Race Chaser Live at O2 Ritz Manchester (1,500).

The Manchester live network will be further bolstered this December with the opening of the UK’s largest live entertainment arena, Co-op Live. A joint venture between Oak View Group (OVG) and City Football Group (CFG), the venue will have a capacity of 23,500 and play host to over 120 shows annually at Manchester’s Etihad Campus.

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