New arena Co-op Live will support 100 apprentices

Co-op Live, the new 23,500 capacity arena in Manchester, is set to support a minimum of 100 apprenticeships during the three-year construction phase, as well as establishing a new training hub for the local community.

The arena, which is being developed by OVG and construction partners BAM, is situated on a site at the Etihad Campus and will bring a huge boost to Greater Manchester’s economy.

The latest announcement follows calls by the Northern Powerhouse Partnership for 10,000 additional apprentices to level up the North in order to address growing skills shortages.

Ten new apprentices are already working on site but there are opportunities for apprenticeships in manual trades, such as mechanics, plumbing and electrical work related to the arena’s build.

The project will also support technical and professional management roles such as quantity surveyors, site managers, audio and visual technicians and other engineers.

These apprenticeships will provide highly skilled opportunities for young people ranging from level 2 through to level 5, which is degree level work and beyond.

BAM’s team will mentor apprentices through the program, and work with subcontractors to ensure there are opportunities for local young people in every aspect of the build.

Since OVG launched its plans for the new arena, employment and training opportunities have been central to its plans to make a positive social impact in Manchester.

The partnership with Co-op Group, which will see the new arena named Co-op Live for at least 15 years, reaffirmed the commitment to developing a socially responsible venue and nurturing apprenticeships, as Co-op employs around 1,000 apprentices annually.

Mark Donnelly, chief operating officer, OVG International, said: “We’re committed to maximising training and employment opportunities during the construction of Co-op Live.

“It’s brilliant to see the first 10 apprentices working on site and we recognise the role apprenticeships play in up-skilling people, and I’m excited to continue working with Bam and others to deliver 100 apprenticeships who will help bring one of the world’s greatest arenas to Manchester.”

Ian Fleming, BAM’s Regional Director, said: “These are exciting times for Manchester and for my team across the whole of the North West.

“As the construction partners for this amazing new arena, our commitment to the city cannot be spelled out any better than by using the work we do to improve local people’s life chances in this way.

“It’s a brilliant opportunity to give something back to the working life of the city we have built so much of, for so long.”