Tuesday 22 January 2013, 11:48 | By Chris Cooke
Live Nation relocates London festivals to Olympic Park
Live Nation will move its central London festivals Wireless and Hard Rock Calling to the Olympic Park in East London, after ending its relationship with the Royal Parks.
Wireless, Hard Rock Calling and various other city centre events staged by Live Nation were previously hosted in Hyde Park. But, as previously reported, last year the live music giant ended its relationship with the Royal Parks organisation, claiming that demands made by both the park authority and Westminster Council, which has licensing authority over Hyde Park, made staging events their untenable. Though Live Nation’s competitor AEG Live swooped in to snap up the rights to stage events at Hyde Park, and will do so this summer.
Live Nation will move Wireless and Hard Rock Calling east via a new partnership with the London Legacy Development Corporation. The promoter will stage its festivals in the North Park area of the complex built for last year’s Olympics, as well as staging other concerts in the Olympic Stadium. Live Nation’s concerts will sit alongside a programme of other sporting and entertainment events to be staged at the Olympic site this summer, ahead of a full opening of the complex to the public, under the name Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, in 2014.
Confirming the alliance, London Mayor Boris Johnson, who is also Chairman of the London Legacy Development Corporation, told CMU: “Our vision for the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park has always been as a destination for world class sport as well as for major cultural and leisure events and last summer the world saw what an amazing venue we have created with our iconic stadium, sports facilities and new parklands. The confidence now shown by one of the world’s leading live entertainment promoters to relocate two of its biggest music festivals from the centre of the capital is a ringing endorsement of our legacy plans. Along with the other major international sports events we have already secured this latest news proves that the park has a very bright future indeed”.
Meanwhile Live Nation Europe’s President Of Concerts, John Reid, added: “As the world’s leading provider of music festivals and outdoor events, Live Nation is delighted to have won the inaugural contract for Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. In the coming weeks, we will unveil the headline acts for the first Wireless and Hard Rock festivals to be staged in London’s new flagship venue, which promise to be the UK’s blockbuster events of 2013”.
Meanwhile, back on the West side of London, Barclaycard has been unveiled as headline sponsor of the events AEG Live will stage in Hyde Park over the next five years, in a sponsorship deal believed to be worth between £5-7.5 million. Barclaycard was previously sponsor of Live Nation’s Wireless event in Hyde Park.