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LIVE: Co-op Live finally opens as Elbow kick off venue's first gig after weeks of chaos - latest updates

After weeks of delays, Manchester's new £365m arena has finally opened its doors. The venue, billed as the 'most expensive' arena built outside North America, will host local heroes Elbow as their headline act tonight (May 14).

After a number of false starts, which have seen gigs cancelled, postponed and rescheduled over the last few weeks, bosses at the flagship venue assured fans on Friday that the gig would be going ahead following a safety inspection, and the Bury band told fans they were 'ready'.

Two weeks ago, Co-op Live, now the UK's largest music and entertainment venue, postponed its opening show for a third time after part of the ventilation and air conditioning system fell to the ground from the ceiling during a soundcheck for A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie's May 1 show. Co-op Live has now said it is “satisfied” the issue was an “isolated manufacturing default” following an inspection.

READ MORE: Elbow at Co-op Live - seating plan, support, set times, parking and everything you need to know

Issues for the landmark gig venue began following a test event headlined by Rick Astley on Saturday, April 20, as problems with the electricity supply and communications saw the capacity have to be reduced from 11,000 to 4,000, with a number of ticket holders turned away from the venue.

Peter Kay's planned two shows on April 23 and 24 were postponed and put back a week to 29 and 30 April, and the venue's General Manager Gary Roden resigned following backlash against him claiming to the BBC that grassroots music venues were often "poorly run."

Peter Kay's rescheduled dates were then moved to May 23 and 24, as the venue was still not ready, while The Black Keys saw their April 27 moved to May 15. Pushing the opening to May 1,

Read more on manchestereveningnews.co.uk