Noel Gallagher to headline benefit concert for reopening of Manchester Arena

The former Oasis star will perform with other confirmed acts being The Courteeners, Blossoms and Rick Astley.

The Manchester Arena will reopen for the first time since the terror attack with a benefit concert to honour those killed in the bombing.

Arena bosses announced on Wednesday that the venue, which has been closed since the attack on May 22, will open its doors again on Saturday September 9.

The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains viewing – London
Noel Gallagher attending a viewing of The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains at the V&A, London (PA)

The We Are Manchester concert will include performances from Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, The Courteeners, Blossoms and Rick Astley.

Poet Tony Walsh, known as Longfella, will also perform and there will be a pre-show DJ set from Clint Boon.

All profits raised will go to the Manchester Memorial Fund, a charitable trust overseen by the city’s Lord Mayor which will go towards establishing a permanent memorial for the victims of the attack.

BBC Music Awards 2016 – London
Rick Astley attending the BBC Music Awards at the Royal Victoria Dock in London (PA)

James Allen, general manager of the arena, said: “May’s events will never be forgotten but they will not stop us – or Mancunian music fans – from coming together to enjoy live music.

“Manchester Arena has celebrated over 20 years hosting some of the greatest musical talent of all time and the significant economic and cultural impact that this has on the city means that this legacy must continue.”

Councillor Sue Murphy, deputy leader of Manchester City Council, said: “Those who perpetrate terrorist attacks want to divide us and stifle our freedoms.

Leeds Festival 2016
The Courteeners lead singer Liam Fray performs during the Leeds Festival at Bramham Park, West Yorkshire (PA wire)

“No-one will ever forget the terrible events of May 22 but Manchester has reacted with love, solidarity and a determination to continue doing the things which make this such a vibrant city.

“We welcome the reopening of the arena, a major venue which attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors, as a powerful symbol of this defiant and resilient spirit.

“It is entirely fitting that the reopening event should be a memorial fundraiser.”

Concert-goers will have to go through additional security and screening.

Suicide bomber Salman Abedi killed 22 people when he detonated a device as crowds left an Ariana Grande concert at the arena on May 22.

Tickets for the benefit concert cost £25 and £30 plus booking fee and will go on sale at 9am on Thursday.

They can be booked at www.eventim.co.uk or by calling 0844 847 8000 and at www.ticketmaster.co.uk or by calling 0844 844 0444.

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