Bill Bailey and Jason Manford to play first socially-distanced arena | Newcastle Racecourse becomes a festival site

Bill Bailey and Jason Manford to play first socially-distanced arena

Newcastle Racecourse becomes a festival site

Jason Manford and Bill Bailey are to be the first comedians to play what’s being billed as the first socially distanced live music arena.

From August 14,  Newcastle Racecourse is being transformed into the Virgin Money Unity Arena, with 500 well-spaced viewing platforms.

The programme of events kicks off with Two Door Cinema Club with other bands lined up inclueing Supergrass, The Libertines and a funk and soul DJ set from Craig Charles.

Manford plays the festival on Sunday August 30 with  Bill Bailey on September 1 and 2.

Festival organiser Steve Davis from  SSD Concerts said: ‘We're excited to be working with artists who have the same desire to make something happen during difficult times for the industry and the general public.

‘The rock 'n' roll can-do attitude of the artists performing and the team behind Virgin Money Unity Arena will make these shows ones to remember for the rest of our lives.’

Tickets go on sale at 10am on Friday. 

Meanwhile, a smaller outdoor comedy venue opens its doors in Bristol tonight.

Bristol nightclub Lakota has opened up a courtyard venue running events on each night of the week including live Premiership football, film nights, quiz night and  sit down discos. Punters are confined to tables 1.5 metres apart with members of their own household, while a canvas has been erected over the area in case of rain.

Tonight’s gig, featuring Stuart Goldsmith, Funmbi Omotayo and compere Sally-Anne Haywood has already sold out at £50 a table. Promoters Comedy Box have more shows throughout July. Listings.

Published: 7 Jul 2020

What do you think?

Today's comedy-on demand picks


Friends and comics Alison Spittle and Fern Brady's BBC Sounds podcast has started today with the aim of covering 'embarrassing, bleak and cringe anecdotes' to make each other laugh'. The first episode features guest Lou Sanders discussing virginity, competing to find out how had the worst first time

Click for more suggestions
... including a the 20th virtual XS Malarkey club night and a new Netflix stand-up special from Sam Jay.

We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.