Wolverhampton has made the top ten in a major survey of the best live music scenes – thanks to venues like the Civic Hall and the Robin2. It is a ringing endorsement of the city, which is currently in the middle of an exciting ten-day ‘Enjoy Wolverhampton’ programme of free or purse-friendly activities showcasing its gems. Leading entertainment listings site Ents24 places Wolverhampton in the top ten alongside London, at number one, Manchester, second, and Bristol, third, for live music venues.
Statistics collected by Ents24 put Wolverhampton ahead of several major cities including Edinburgh, Sheffield and Nottingham. Ents 24 lists ‘more forthcoming events in the UK than anyone else’ and has ‘details of more than 22,000 active venues listed’. This, the company says, ‘gives us a great insight into which gigs - and areas - are the most popular’. It puts Wolverhampton in tenth place saying ‘although it is just 13 miles from Birmingham the city has its own thriving music scene thanks in part to three popular council-run venues, the Civic Hall, Wulfrun Hall and Slade Rooms, with the Robin2 also nearby, in Bilston.
City of Wolverhampton Council Cabinet Member for City Economy, Councillor John Reynolds, said: “It is great for a national listing agency to prove what we already know – Wolverhampton has some of the best venues on the UK’s live music scene.
“At present both the Civic and Wulfrun are undergoing significant investment because we want to continue to attract major promoters, their musicians and performers to our city, by increasing the capacity of both halls, and improving facilities for audiences.”
The halls are undergoing a £10.6 million revamp to add seating capacity and improve access and facilities. They are partially reopening from September to December 2016 for the legendary Singha Beer Grand Slam of Darts, The Specials, Al Murray, Professor Brian Cox and Catherine Tate - to name but a few of the exciting acts booked in.
Both venues have hosted the world’s best in music and comedy, from Blur, Radiohead and Motorhead to chart-topping One Direction, comedians Jimmy Carr and Sarah Millican.
Further back, the much-loved venue saw the likes of The Kinks, The Who, Genesis, and David Bowie with Tin Machine, grace its 78-year-old stage.
Ents24 said: “With a little technical wizardry, we looked at which postcode areas have the most active venues within them to create two heat maps, showing the results regionally and by postcode area respectively. We then factored in the popularity of shows happening in each postcode area, and used population data to weight those scores fairly, creating an Event Popularity Score and a third and final map.”