City of Wolverhampton Council and AEG Presents have completed a deal that will see the venue operator and concert promoter manage the city’s Civic Halls for 25 years.

The council announced in March it had agreed a deal for AEG Presents to manage the venue, supported by ASM Global.

AEG Presents is scheduled to take up occupation of the halls in late April 2022 and then commence the internal fit-out to the front of house bars, kitchen and sound and lights systems.

The first artists to perform at the multi-million-pound, newly refurbished Halls are expected to be announced later this year with the venue set to reopen in Autumn 2022.

The works currently being undertaken by Willmott Dixon Interiors inside the halls will see the height above the stage to the rear of the Civic Hall increased.

AEG said there will be more comfortable seats, more bars and more space, expanded and revamped toilet facilities, lift access to new balconies, improved access arrangements for disabled visitors, a greater number of accessible viewing points and improved room temperatures through the installation of a new air conditioning system.

AEG Presents CEO Steve Homer (pictured right) said, “This is a long-term commitment and 25-year deal by AEG which is going to be a game-changer for the future of the Civic Halls and the city.

“We are taking on a hugely important national venue and asset which has massive potential. We believe in it hugely and we believe in this city which is why we are investing and bringing the very best acts to this world-famous stage.

“The City of Wolverhampton Council’s investment to safeguard the Civic Halls for future generations and bring the building back to life was key to our investment decisions. We now have a fantastic, relatively blank canvas to work on and will be setting about investing on the inside of the building to create a premium AEG customer experience. We can’t wait to get on with the job, get shows on sale and get open.”

Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for City Economy Councillor Stephen Simkins (pictured left) said, “We’re excited by the opportunity to work with the AEG Presents team to relight our Civic Halls and will continue to work closely with them. We’re putting in investment in the public space outside the building so it’s fantastic for visitors and progressing plans to bring a premier hotel brand to the heart of the city as part of our Westside re-phasing.

“AEG Presents’ passion for the iconic halls and ambition for the future matches our own and this partnership will not only deliver an outstanding venue with top-class entertainment for generations to come – it will be a keystone of our wider plans to reimagine the city centre, to create local jobs and grow vital local businesses. Never has this been more needed than now, as we plot a path out of the pandemic.”