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Wembley Arena (London)

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      02.02.2011 14:21
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      A Venue fit for the Name.

      Many of us have been to sports events, gigs, concerts and shows, and a lot of the time we judge weather we should go on the quality of the venue its being held. I have been to a fair few of different multi-event arenas and venues around the country, but most of the shows I have been too have been at Wembley Arena, and after the four different types of event I have attended since it's £35 million refurbishment, I feel its time to voice my thoughts on the new Wembley Arena.

      --The New Arena--

      It was originally built in 1934, and named the Empire Pool and renamed in 1978. In 2006 it was heavily refurbished as part of the regeneration of Wembley project. It has hosted Olympic sports, comedy shows, variety shows, music concerts, band gigs and many other sports events. There are entry gates all around the Arena, simply labelled as South, West, East and North. It has a maximum capacity of 12,500.

      --Getting There and Surrounding Areas--

      Situated on Engineers Way in Wembley, the rather inconspicuous white & grey Arena sits next to the unmistakable sight of its 'Big Brother', Wembley Stadium. So finding this venue is not hard, as there are many, many signposts scattered around the local area pointing to towards the two buildings. Travelling in by car is really not recommended given the amount of public transport links to the Wembley area, as the parking can and will cost you a fair bit, especially close to the venue. You can possibly find a free parking space of Wembley Park Drive, but go early, as these spaces do get taken up quickly. There is a nice small car park located at Station Grove behind Wembley Central Station, but this is a bit of a walk to the Arena. It is best to travel in by train, either to Wembley Stadium station or Wembley Park underground station. If you go in by the latter you will be treated to a walk down Wembley Way, facing the massive arch of the Stadium. This is my preferred choice for visiting the area, and I have never had problems or heavy delays. Make sure to do avoid the crowds and go ahead early, there are many bars and restaurants close by for you to have a bite to eat or a tipple to kill the time before the start of your chosen show.

      --Outside the Venue--

      Once you are there, the outside of the Arena is very nice, well signposted and kept clean of litter and graffiti. The design of the building is quite striking, albeit painted with a rather dull white/grey effect. At the front, (East Gate) there is the Square of Fame. Like the Hollywood namesake, you can find the hand prints in bronze plaques of famous acts who have performed at the Arena over the years. Most noticeable though, is the dancing fountains in the middle of the square. If you wish, you can run and play in these, but be prepared to get a little damp! Of course, visiting children do often hang around in this area for the fun of the fountains, so be aware of this. Apart from various merchandise stalls, there are food and drink stalls outside in this area too. I suggest you take advantage of these, because once your inside, the food and drink prices are rather expensive. Merchandise prices predictable remain the same. When the sun goes down, the paintwork of the building becomes apparent. Neon multi coloured lights reflect of the face of the building, creating a beautiful effect, and cameras are always clicking away at this sight if you come out of show to darkness. The fountains are also lit up with this effect, and it is all quite exciting and classy.

      --Inside the Venue--

      It's very easy gaining entry to the Arena once you have found your correct gate, (read you ticket carefully) But the security staff are friendly and helpful to guide you if you do get a little lost. Once inside, depending on where you entered, there is plenty of space in the concourse areas, again littered with food and drink stalls. The prices at these are quite expensive though, so if you are hungry, make sure you have some spare cash. The walls are all white and grey again, but the feeling is comfortable and the signposting is clear and helpful, so you shouldn't lose your way. There is an adequate amount of toilets, equally for both sexes, which are clean and well maintained. Finding your entrance to the arena floor is also easy, weather you are on the higher seats or on the ground. When inside, you get a great feeling of a well organised event, you only have to ask a friendly steward and they will show you to your seats. If you are at a sport type event, the floor is given away to the performers, while the crowd surrounds the area much like an amphitheatre, apart from the South side, as this is where the stage is. During a music event, you will face the South side of the Arena. Views are excellent, and you don't feel you are that far away from the performers, the whole Arena is quite compact but doesn't feel cramped and you never feel rushed or flustered. If seated, the seats have a lot of leg room and room for movement, you can even stand up and dance if you wish! If you are standing, obviously you will get a little pushed and hemmed in during big songs or finales, but if you choose to stand, I would assume you would be ready for this.

      The acoustics in the Arena are great, and you can feel every drum beat, high vocal, boot of a ball or punch line very clearly. During shows that expect a large turnout, big screens are erected on the stage walls, which, depending on the band, are bright, large and clear. The lighting effects can sometime be a little to much for your eyes, but again, this does depend on what you are watching. On my personal familiarity, watching the Masters Football at the Arena is a brilliant experience. The house lights are fully on during this, but don't give you any glare or 'spots' in your eyes.

      When your show is over, expect people to rush to get out. Personally, I am never in a rush to leave, I make plans for this in advance, and I would suggest you do the same. Although there is a lot of space in the concourse areas, they get crowed very quickly with everyone rushing to leave. They have large exit doors, which are placed at every other gate entrance for all the guests to leave quickly and calmly. These are only ever open at the end of the show, but I think are a good idea and work well. Outside, you have the square to entertain you of course, but also the police presence is noticeable but not too invading, again keeping with a good mood and atmosphere. Walking back to your train station, home, bus stop or car, there are many late fast food places and shops open in the local area if you wish to partake in these. The small off-licence in Empire Way (West side) gets crowed very quickly, normally selling out of bottle water!

      --Conclusion--

      In conclusion, this is a excellent venue! It looks not the most greatest of buildings to look at, and the refreshments are pricy, but everything else about it is flawless. Events are organised very professionally, carefully and coolly. The security staff are helpful and friendly, the surroundings provide entertainment and hotel facilities. At night the building transforms into a beautiful light and water show! The only thing you would really have to worry about is the quality of the show, that I couldn't comment on, that's your choice. Whatever you go to see, you will not be complaining about Wembley Arena. £35 million may be a tad too much, but is has made a British venue to be proud of! Enjoy yourself!

      For more details and ticket information visit http://www.wembleyarena.co.uk/

      Thanks for Reading. © Novabug.

      Also posted on Ciao.Co.Uk.

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        29.05.2010 00:18
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        Great venue and sound

        **Introduction**

        I have been to many concert venues in London in the past two or three years and recently went to another venue to see John Mayer. Wembley Arena is one of the UK's best known Concert Venues and since it's opening in 1934 when it was called the Empire Pool it has been for thousands of events including Concerts, Comedy Gigs and also Sporting Fixtures, The name changed to Wembley Arena in 1978 and the Arena underwent some renovations in 2005-2006 to bring it more up to date against the other venues in London and in other Major cities in the United Kingdom. Wembley Arena is a Live Nation Arena.

        **The Arena**

        This Arena is the second biggest in terms of capacity in London, Behind the 02 Arena of course. Wembley Arena holds 12,500 people and is flexible in terms of layout depending on the event. The Arena's refurbishment cost £35m and for me it's money well spent as walking up to the Arena you really get a sense of the importance and stature of the Arena. Once you are in it looks very nice and there are great facilities for concert goers with plenty of toilets and I found that the layout of the Arena is easy to follow. The Arena is very close to Wembley Stadium which cuts a very imposing presence itself.

        **Food and Drink**

        In the Square in front of the Arena you are able to purchase a decent enough variety of hot food and there's also a bar stand which sells various drinks for concert goers before they enter the Arena. Once you go into the Arena there are bars for you to meet your friends and have a couple of drinks before you go into the Arena to take your seats for the Concert. As you would expect with this type of venue, The prices are quite high so expect to pay around £4 for a pint of Lager or Cider. There are a number of soft drinks available for around £2.

        **Square of Fame**

        This is basically Similar to the Hollywood Walk of Fame but is done in a different way. This is quite a novel idea and is to mark the contribution a number of stars have made to the Arena's success over the years with a number of performances there. Stars in the Square of Fame include the likes of Madonna, Kylie Minogue, Sir Cliff Richard and Dolly Parton amongst others. One of the most recent inductees are Westlife who have sold out an incredible 27 shows at Wembley in 10 years. I like the idea of the Square of Fame because it gives something back to the performers and shows the apprieciation for them.

        **The Sound**

        When I go to a Concert I am always eager to hear a wonderful sound system as it just adds to the whole experience and it certainly was a very good performance indeed. The speakers hang from wires from the ceiling like several other venues I have been to and the instruments were all reproduced with a wonderful crisp sound which had a lot of bass to it. It also went very loud without any problems. It was up there with the best I have heard from a Concert and I would recommend the venue to people who asked me about the sound at venues.

        **Car Parking**

        There are a couple of car parks close to the venue which are quite expensive for the duration of the Concert. The Wembley Stadium car Park is available and then there is a car park which we parked in which was £13 for a space for the evening. It is worth booking online in advance so you know your travel and parking arrangements are all sorted in time. If you are coming by tube or bus from somewhere else in London then there's of course the nearby Wembley Park station. Like any venue you should have all this stuff sorted before your visit.

        **Overall**

        Wembley Arena deserves it's stature in the UK Music Industry as one of the best Concert Venues in the United Kingdom. London has it's fair share of great Music venues and this is up there with the best of them. There have been some of the biggest names performing at the venue over decades and decades and that shows no sign of changing thanks to the recent refurbishment and renovation which took place just five years ago. Why not check online to see if any of your favourite artists are performing here soon and give Wembley Arena a go. A fine venue that London should rightly be proud of.

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        05.02.2010 18:36
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        You will have a pleasent time experiencing an event here. Recommended!

        Well, I just came back from Wembley Arena last night from seeing 'Rammstein' and the whole experience was amazing.

        Being that this is a review of the arena, I will talk about that. The ticket ordering process was easy and simple, I called their box office and had the tickets ordered within minutes of asking for what I wanted. Staff on the phone were polite.

        So, last night was the event and I have to say the staff were just as nice as they were on the phone.

        Sometimes, you can get a few security stewards who are a bit up themselves but they were ok here, no problems.

        Security checks are standard, they search bags but no frisking.

        I was there for a concert last night and the soundstage was great. I was in a seating area but was quite close to the front and got some good photo's.

        Outside, there were drink stands.

        I don't drink alcohol but the price of a stella was £4 and you get them served in plastic pint cups.

        There were also merchandise stands outside and I got myself a sweatshirt of the band. Staff there were also nice and helpful!

        Outside of the arena was a jet water fountain, if you have seen the fountains outside of the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas (youtube it) then it's like that, but only a lot more smaller. The public can control these water jets to shoot water in different directions, together with music.

        All in all, it was a very pleasent experience at the Wembley Arena and it's one venue that I would certainly go back to!

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        30.07.2009 23:08
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        A great indoor arena.

        I should stress before I start that I did not visit Wembley Arena for a musical event, so I can not comment on how good the sound was and what the noise was like. Earlier in the year I did go to Wembley Arena for another event with a fantastic atmosphere, The White & Mackay Premier League Darts semi finals and final where James Wade paid back my ticket as I backed him at at 9/2.

        Wembley Arena is situated right next to the magnificient Wembley Stadium and that day was truly a cracking atmosphere as the Championship play off final happened that afternoon. When we pulled up at Wembley Park station the imposing sight was a lot of glum looking Sheffield United fans and as we walked up to the Arena the banter was immense. I really needed a good night after Newcastle were relegated the day before and I found myself ending the night singing Alan Shearer's name to defend the army of abuse!

        Wembley Arena was built for the 1934 Empire Games and the pool was used for the 1948 Olympics. It is the second largest indoor arena in London, behind the O2 Arena with a capacity of 12,500. Wembley Arena hosts a wide variery of events. Other sports to darts include Ice Hockey, Boxing and Mixed Martial Arts. The Arena has played hosts to artists such as AC/DC, Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen and Madonna. It is also used for stand up comedy and WWE tour events.

        There were a few entrances for Wembley Arena and me and my friend thought it was organised quite well as we did not have to queue for longer than ten minutes which is good considering your bags are searched on entry. Once inside you can buy food and refreshments at ridiculous prices should you wish but we decided to just take our seats right at the top of the stand. Being enclosed, the arena in naturally quite dark which would make for a great musical event and I felt with the shape of the arena the sound was kept in and circulated fairly well. Everywhere in the Arena, there is a good view of the stage at the front whether you are in the side seats, the seats at the far end or if you are lucky enough to be in the middle and therefore lower than the stage.

        Wembley Arena ran the event really well in my opinion with the fans kept under control well which is important as most are males who are drinking. But no-one goes to darts looking for a fight, people just want to have a good time, watch the darts and sing a few songs.

        As far as getting out was concerned it was OK compared to the stadium beside it. Due to the small capacity there is space to move on Wembley Way and you are not queueing for a tube for too long. Wembley Arena is a fantastic indoor Arena and is well worth a visit if there is an event you want to see.

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          08.01.2003 02:58
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          And they say ?BACKSTAGE PASSES? are just complete and utter lies! Well to be honest I thought that about a year ago. A year ago I was just a regular music fan who enjoys going to concerts, a year on, I still am, but there is one main difference. That difference is the Main Event Ticket Guide! I know posses the knowledge of ticket secrets that can get almost any fan into concerts for free and even backstage! Its unbelievable... I first saw an advert in the classifieds section of the magazine I enjoy reading ? London Gigs Guide. The advert was just a three line text message saying something along the lines of, ?Ticket Secrets Revealed, see any concert for FREE!?. It then listed the website. I thought that this was just another scam, but it had a website address and so I thought I had nothing to lose by just checking it out. How thankful I am that I did! The website was an advert for a booklet that supposedly told of the Secrets To The Ticket/Concert Industry. It stated that I would be able to see every Concert no matter on what the demand was. It also stated in the advertisement that I could get FREE concert tickets! Is this possible, I thought? Well I sure know now! It was just after my birthday, I had some spare cash left and although I was sceptical, I bought the ?Main Event Ticket Guide?! I was unsure whether this booklet would actually arrive, but to my delight, it arrived 3 days later... I instantly opened it, and soon found myself gripped to the page with excitement and astonishment. What it was saying actually made sense, but the question remained: Will these techniques work??? Well after trying them out, they worked amazingly well. It takes a bit of time to master it, but it does work! Free Tickets & Backstage Passes are possible!!! The Main Event Ticket Guide is a MUST for anyone who enjoys going to concerts, or anyone wanting to make money by selling tickets. I do seriously suggest that you consider purchasing t
          his unique item, it will probably be your only chance to get something this spectacular. The price of this astonishing booklet is only £15 ? that?s much cheaper than a concert ticket is. Its worth a look anyway, I have listed the website address below and if you do decide to use the information in the booklet then good luck and have a great time at all the gigs you attend... The website is: http://metg.fateback.com/metg.html Questions: evertonfc75@hotmail.com

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          11.10.2001 00:35
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          Wembleyticket.com is the official website for the Wembley Box Office. It allows you to research and book tickets online for all events on the Wembley Complex, including the Wembley Arena, Wembley Conference Centre & Exhibition Halls and Wembley Stadium. It also provides detailed information on events and venues. It is a simple to navigate site, very aesthetically pleasing, without any need for flash or shockwave. It does mention, however, plans to enhance and develop the site over the next few months, and I hope it does not loose the simplicity. When you enter the site you are presented with 5 main options: Info, Search, Events, Calendar and Venues. Info This section basically explains the site and the Wembley Box Office, along with its Policies and Disclaimers and Credits. This is basically the legal part of the site. Search Search, not surprisingly, lets you search for a show. You can search using these five fields: @ An event by category (Sport, Music, Family, Theatre, Exhibitions, Festivals, Religious, Dance, Movie awards, Show) @An event by name @A Venue (Offering hundreds of nationwide venues ? This section is not 100% clear to me, I think it is still in development, yet it does however provide contact info for many theatres around the country) @Venues in a city (Offering most major towns and cities) @Events in a specific month A list of all matching events come up and you can request more details about those that appeal to you. Events In the Event section, you search for a specific event using the name or category. It then lists the events matching, and you can request further information on them. Calendar In the Calendar section, you can select a certain date, and view all shows on that date. You can then find more details on each event. Venues Here you can select a venue from around the country, and then view informatio
          n such as, address, box office number, parking details, general rules, and other information. You can also look at current events, however this only appears to work for Wembley Complex venues at the moment. When the events are shown youy can request further information. Requesting Further Information To request more information about a venue you can click on its name. You will then be taken to a pop up window with details. These include @Event Name and Artist @Dates @Short description @Detailed description @General information @Show times @Ticket Prices @Ticket availability Status @Booking Info @Maximum number of tickets per person Booking Info You can book tickets in different ways, post, phone or online. As a lot of shows are popular and sell out very fast, the postage method is not recommended. The phone starts tediously, with automated responses? ?For? S Club 7? press1? For Cliff Richard? press 2?? etc. It then puts you through to an operator. Booking online is much easier, and works as with most online stores. My Experiences I only recently discovered this site, but used it to order 5 tickets to see Blink 182 on November 3rd. 3 months later I had not received the tickets, so I phoned up. I was put through to a very polite operator, who informed me as they were standing tickets, they would not be shipped until two weeks before the event. She told me this was on my conformation email. Ooops! I looked at the email, and it didn?t actually say that, it did however say they would be ?sent NO LESS than two weeks prior to the event? This, however is the only criticism I have of this good site, which I recommend if you are purchasing tickets for Wembley Complex Events. I will update this, when my tickets arrive, and after the gig - so stayed tuned!

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            10.03.2001 01:40
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            I have been to Wembley Arena twice now, the first time to see Green Day in late December 2000, and the second to see The Offspring in early 2001. At Green Day I had seats high up at the side of the venue. Our view of the stage was fairly clear, and the sound wasn't bad. It wasn't too loud, and fairly clear. It was a great gig, however being seated meant severe restrictions on how much we could jump around, the steps were narrow, we would have fallen if the floor had not been incredibly sticky...All in all, worth the trip if its a band you like, you may be left with regrets that you didn't get a standing ticket however. At Offspring we booked early and managed to get standing tickets. The sound quality was alright, although the bass was very loud in the mix, we were standing right beneath the speakers, however, I was not left with much ringing in my ears. You could still feel the sound pass through you, which is a great feeling. I wasn't far from the front, and got a little crushed when the band came onto the stage, this sorted itself out, and the heavy-handed security removed quite a few people. The venue in general is a fair price for drinks, and security is very tight, for instance I wasn't allowed to take ice-cubes into the mosh pit with me. I would recommend Wembley Arena for events, however there are several more personal smaller venues in the area that may be better if you get the chance.

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              14.10.2000 02:58
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              Myself and my 17 year old daughter went to see Britney Spears at Wembley Arena last night and thoroughly enjoyed her performance. However, Wembley itself was a bit of a disappointment. It is so tatty looking now and considering it is known worldwide for hosting concerts, couldn't a bit (or maybe a lot) of money be spent making it more attractive and more of an asset to the town. As far as the concert itself was concerned, the sound quality I'm afraid, was not too good. There was so much bass that you could feel the ground beneath your feet shake and the chairs moved, but it stopped you hearing the songs properly. This was more evident with the supporting acts, rather than Britney's performance, when they seemed to have sorted it out. And where were the screens enabling people at the far back to see what was happening? Admittedly there was one on the right hand side, albeit a small one tucked round the corner, but we couldn't see one on the left at all. The screen above Britney herself sometimes showed her, but most of the time showed videos according to which song she was singing. I felt quite sorry for people in 'the gods' as they would have seen 'a dot' where Britney was. I couldn't help comparing Wembley to Earl's Court which is where my daughter and I went to see Backstreet Boys in concert last year. There were about 6 or so screens around the guys enabling everyone to get a good view. OK, so the concert was 'in the round' anyway which helped, but obviously a lot of thought had gone into finding out what would be best for the fans. Come on Wembley, you have a name to live up to. Put some time and effort into making the place great again!

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