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New Cardiff Arena to recognise Wales as the Land of Song

24 Jul 2021 4 minute read
Artist’s impression of the new Cardiff Arena

It’s been revealed that plans are under way to recognise the musical heritage of Wales as part of the new Cardiff Arena.

The latest in a series of public consultation webinars into redevelopment plans for Atlantic Wharf in Cardiff Bay, which include the building of the 15,000 capacity Cardiff Arena, heard from venue operator Live Nation’s chief operating officer Graham Walters about how the new arena will be operated and managed.

Following a question from a member of the public as part of a Q&A session, he detailed how they are looking to celebrate the rich musical heritage and history of Cardiff and Wales at the state-of-the-art new venue.

Heritage and history

It was put to him that, ‘Wales is renowned as the land of song, yet there is nothing for visitors to the city to discover to inform them of the unique cultural and contemporary musical history of Wales. I believe you have a great opportunity to develop a tourist attraction that would create extra revenue into the arena.

‘If you want people to come early and stay late then this would be an ideal opportunity to increase footfall and embellish the arena’s reputation as a must visit, both day and night. It would also be a tangible link between the local community and the arena as well as serve as an educational opportunity. Do you believe something like this would be possible?’

In response he said: “Yes I do. It forms part of the overall masterplan and the way we’re looking to connect and work with the Wales Millennium Centre, stakeholders in the Bay, residents in Butetown and the new museum that’s planned to open.

“Absolutely we recognise the heritage and history that Cardiff offers and we will try and build that into the design and look of the arena through the materials and the finishes, but we will also have space to curate some degree of art, music and heritage displays that can all be fed into the infrastructure in that area (of the arena).

“It’s a key area that we can work on and certainly our partner architects are looking at these elements already and we’ll develop that through the planning phase and consultation with the local residents and the city as a whole.”

The Red Dragon Centre at Atlantic Wharf, which will be replaced by a modern, mixed-use development including food and leisure amenities as part of redevelopment plans. Picture by Roger Cornfoot (CC BY-SA 2.0).

Following the launch of the public consultation into Cardiff Council’s plans for the transformation of Atlantic Wharf, a series of webinars have taken place throughout July to provide local residents, businesses and those who signed up for more information about the plans, with an opportunity to find out more about the proposals for Phase 1 of the development.

Hosted by the consortium behind the new Arena – construction company Robertson, global arena operator Live Nation and arena developer Oak View Group, the webinars shared the latest proposals for the redevelopment while gathering the views of the public.

The 15,000 capacity arena to be built in Cardiff Bay is part of Cardiff Council’s redevelopment of Atlantic Wharf, which will include retail and leisure facilities, hotels, multi-storey car-parking and new homes.

The arena will be positioned at the heart of a new cultural area incorporating the Wales Millennium Centre production space, potentially a National Art Gallery, and a ‘This is Wales’ fly-through visitor attraction.

To watch the webinars and find out more about the project, as well as give your views in the public consultation visit:

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Dai Rob
Dai Rob
2 years ago

The Land of Song……yet the capital come down hard & try and smash any small independent music venues and it as difficult as possible for them to operate effectively!!

Kerry Davies
Kerry Davies
2 years ago
Reply to  Dai Rob

It isn’t “the capital” but “Das Kapital” and so it has always been. Right opposite the building site that was Gwdihw is a site which was one of the architectural wonders of Cardiff when I used to swim there. Money talked and it is now a disposable chunk of concrete in the form of a hotel. The DIY ethos of popular music was handed down to my generation (72 now) by our fathers from the song parties and marching bands of the depression and from us to the warehouse parties and raves. If you can’t replace those venues lost to… Read more »

2 years ago

Hooray! More Shiite for Cardiff!
I mean I live near and like Cardiff, but spread the bloody wealth a little bit eh?
Even in the South we are deprived in favour of Cardiff, but our brethren and sistren in the North and West get bloody nothing.
An independent Cymru must be a unified Cymru. Or is that the point of Cardiff? Near the border to be convenient to the masters? Divide and keep conquered?

j humphrys
j humphrys
2 years ago

A land of song, as there are others, such as Estonia.

2 years ago
Reply to  j humphrys

Agreed. Loads of them. But this is just part of that faux Wenglish pride that so many of us buy into. Tudor dragons, daffodils, miners, Tom Jones, Shirley Bassey, rugby and the North Wales train station. Makes me cringe. And for all the knackers written in the article about celebrating heritage. It’s just a gig venue designed to lure pampered pop stars from Amerika into Cymru by having something better than Bristol

Last edited 2 years ago by Chris
Johnny Gamble
Johnny Gamble
2 years ago

Devolution at its finest.Cardiff a City State within a Nation.

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