With its almost 49,000 seats Stadium of Light has been not only one of north England’s biggest stadiums but also concert venues. Not this year! Why?
As it stands now, Sunderland AFC are expected not to host a summer concert in 2017. Since 2009 every year they collected extra revenue after appearances from Coldplay, Bruce Springsteen, Rihanna and Beyoncé, among others. Now the period between Premier League seasons won’t bring a star of that format to the city.
Last month the Sunderland Echo revealed that Sunderland City Council was removing its financial support for future concerts under new budget proposals. With budget shortage the city is cutting back on expenses and in previous years concerts were hosted with significant help from authorities (between £75,000 and 150,000 per concert). Now the city council needs to find £74 million in savings.
Not staging a concert doesn’t only mean lower revenue for Sunderland AFC but also for the local economy. It’s estimated that each gig at Stadium of Light brought some £3.5 million in spending from the thousands of visitors.