Ericsson Indoor Arena to become Netball showcase for Commonwealth Games
Birmingham 2022 today announces that Coventry’s Ericsson Indoor Arena will host Netball as part of its Commonwealth Games bid proposal.
The Ericsson Indoor Arena, part of the Ricoh Arena, is home to Wasps Netball, winners of the Vitality Netball Superleague in 2017. The new Wasps Netball team is not only proving to be a force in the national game but is engaging with thousands of women and girls beginning or returning to the sport.
The Ericsson Indoor Arena is a 6,000 sq m hall that is fully adaptable and includes high density WiFi using small cell technology, is regularly transformed to accommodate exhibitions, conferences, sporting events and concerts. All Birmingham 2022 Netball fixtures, including preliminaries and finals will be held in the Arena, with 5,000 temporary seats installed for the Games.
With Coventry just 20 minutes fast train away from Birmingham New Street and 10 minutes from the NEC and Birmingham International Airport, Birmingham can deliver a compact Games for athletes, officials and spectators whilst also spreading the benefits of the Games across the West Midlands.
The Coventry & Warwickshire LEP is fully backing the Birmingham 2022 bid and this partnership also opens up opportunities to work with Coventry on its bid to be UK City of Culture 2021, whilst also contributing to Birmingham’s cultural plans for the Commonwealth Games.
Cllr Kamran Caan, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Sport at Coventry City Council, said:
“Wasps Netball have had an amazing year and raised the profile of the sport and the city with their televised matches and their achievement in being crowned champions in their first ever Vitality Netball Superleague season.
“Their matches are enjoyed by families from around the region and the team is doing a great job to inspire women and girls to take up the sport and activity.
“They have added to the reputation of the Ricoh Arena, which was such a great venue for Olympic Football when we were a host city during London 2012 and I know the Ricoh Arena, and Coventry, would help Birmingham stage a Commonwealth Games to remember.”
Jonathan Browning, chairman of Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP), said:
“Hosting the Commonwealth Games in the West Midlands would bring huge benefits to the region and Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership is pleased to support the Birmingham 2022 bid.
“We’re delighted that the Ericsson Indoor Arena at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry has been selected as one of the venues included in the bid.
“We witnessed the array of positive impacts bringing the London 2012 Games to Coventry and Warwickshire brought to the region, and it would be fantastic to welcome visitors from across the Commonwealth back to our area.
“The West Midlands has all the credentials in place to host a brilliant Commonwealth Games and we are pleased to be working with our colleagues across the region to support the bid.”
Thrilled to be part of the bid
r of Netball and Commonwealth Games Bronze Medallist, Tamsin Greenway, said:“Netball is my passion and the opportunity to recently return to my roots in the Midlands and play week in week out with the team at Wasps is just a dream come true.
“Having won bronze medals at two Commonwealth Games in Melbourne and Delhi I cannot begin to describe my excitement at the thought of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games Netball matches being played here at the Ericsson Indoor Arena.
“We have seen a huge increase in the sport since we started Wasps Netball earlier this year and I know that the West Midlands would put on the most fantastic Commonwealth Games ever.”
Nick Eastwood, Group Chief Executive at Wasps / Ricoh Arena, said:
“We are thrilled to have been chosen to host netball as part of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games bid proposal.
“The Ricoh Arena has vast experience of hosting top-class sporting events, and we look forward to putting on an event that the city of Coventry and the wider Midlands will remember for years to come.”
Ian Ward, Chair of the Commonwealth Games Bid Company, said: “We looked long and hard at the existing international standard venues within the region and are proud to have developed a bid that offers a compact Games with 95% of venues already available. We could not have done that without the support of the Ericsson Indoor Arena, which is on our doorstep.
“We are thrilled to have the support of the Coventry and Warwickshire LEP for the Birmingham 2022 Bid and to be able to share some of the benefits the Games will bring with our neighbours.”