The O2 has praised those that have helped to ensure the venue can reopen within days of damage inflicted by Storm Eunice, after confirming it will resume hosting shows from tomorrow (Friday).
The London venue was damaged during high winds, with the storm tearing off panels from its iconic dome roof and leaving a significant hole.
Following rigorous safety checks, the venue has been deemed safe, secure and structurally sound, meaning it can reopen.
Artists UB40 will be the first to perform at the 20,000-capacity O2 Arena tomorrow night, while smaller live entertainment space, indigo at The O2, will open for live events from Saturday.
Rapper Dave will perform his rescheduled ‘We’re All Alone in This Together’ UK Tour dates on Monday, February 28 and Tuesday, March 1.
The Entertainment District, which includes immersive and interactive experiences, a cinema and over 30 bars and restaurants, will also reopen.
However, due to where the hole is positioned, The O2’s premium outlet shopping experience, Icon Outlet, will remain closed. The hole will also be visible for some time until a permanent solution can be sourced, which will then allow the outlet to reopen.
The O2 management has engaged a team of experts including structural engineers that originally worked on the building design, to ensure safety for staff and visitors.
A new entrance tunnel has also been constructed by Entrance H to enhance the safety of attendees.
Steve Sayer, vice-president and general manager of The O2, said: “Confirming our reopening after such a short closure is a huge testament to everyone who is working so hard to get us open again.
“Safety will always be our number one priority and as a venue, we have always been proud of the standards we hold and delivering a best in class fan and artist experience. On behalf of The O2, I would like to thank our partners, the industry, our stage and all the fans for their support and patience. We’re back, we’re safe and we can’t wait to see you soon.”
Janine Constantin-Russell, managing director of the Entertainment District and Icon Outlet, added: “We are delighted to be reopening the doors at The O2 and can’t wait to get back to doing what we do best, which is providing a world-class experience for our visitors.
“While Icon Outlet will sadly be remaining closed for the time being, we’re incredibly proud to be opening the rest of the venue after such a short closure and are grateful to all of our brand partners and customers who have supported us during this time.”
Image: The O2