Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre

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Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre
Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre.jpg
Entrance to main building (c.2005)
Address Bridge of Don
Aberdeen AB23 8BL
Scotland
Coordinates 57°11′11″N 2°5′14″W / 57.18639°N 2.08722°W / 57.18639; -2.08722Coordinates: 57°11′11″N 2°5′14″W / 57.18639°N 2.08722°W / 57.18639; -2.08722
Owner Aberdeen City Council
Opened 1985
Renovated 2003
Classroom-style seating
440 (Fleming Auditorium)
Banquet/ballroom 685 (Gordon Suite)
533 (Crombie Suite)
244 (Forbes Suite)
Theatre seating
8,500 (BHGE Arena)
2,000 (Boyd Orr Hall)
Enclosed space
 • Total space 9,849 square metres (110,000 sq ft)
 • Exhibit hall floor 7,300 square metres (79,000 sq ft)
 • Breakout/meeting 1,033 square metres (11,000 sq ft)

The Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre (also known as the General Electric Exhibition Centre and often shortened to the AECC), is a large exhibition and conference complex, in Aberdeen, Scotland. The complex is home to a Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express hotel, conference facilities and multi-purpose arena.

The arena currently hosts local sporting events, including the Aberdeen Cup tennis event. In recent years, the AECC underwent a major refurbishment,[1] with the conference facilities being completely re-built. As part of the redevelopment, a large viewing tower was constructed and is one of the tallest structures in Aberdeen.

The BHGE Arena[2] (formerly the AECC Arena (1985–2002), Press & Journal Arena (2002–2012), and the GE Oil and Gas Arena (2012–17)) is an indoor arena which can hold around 4,000 to 8,500 people, depending on the size of the performance.

Events[edit]

History[edit]

The viewing tower
The main entrance in July 2011

Oasis have played several times over the years – their first being two performances on the 19–20 September 1997.[3] They returned for another two gigs on the 9–10 September 2002[4] and once more on 12 December 2005.[5] They performed their most recent, and probably last concerts at the venue on the 1–2 November 2008.[6] All these gigs were sold out in a matter of minutes. Noel Gallagher returned to the venue on 14 February 2012[7] as part of his High Flying Birds Tour. The concert was a sell-out in both capacity and mentally.

Iron Maiden, Neil Young and AC/DC are some the biggest acts in its history when AC/DC played in 1996, Young in 2009 and Iron Maiden in 2011.

On 15 June 2014, American country star Dolly Parton performed a sold out concert at the venue.[8] The concert sold out in less than 10 minutes from going on sale.[9]

Within the last decade it has hosted major international acts including the likes of Westlife, Steps, Kylie Minogue, blink-182, Rihanna, The Prodigy, Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance, Foo Fighters, Jay-Z, 50 Cent, The Killers, Hey Ocean, Katy Perry and Paramore, as well as comedians such as Frankie Boyle, Ricky Tomlinson, Peter Kay, Michael McIntyre and Russell Howard.

One Direction have also played the AECC as part of The X Factor Live Tour 2011.

Since 2006, it has played host to the Premier League Darts.

The arena has also played host to WWE wrestling events, Torville and Dean, Disney on Ice, World Snooker's Grand Prix Championship, The X Factor Live Tour and The Britain's Got Talent Live Tour.

The AECC also hosts many trade conference and exhibitions the largest of which is the biennial SPE Offshore Europe the oil and gas exhibition and conference that which place on alternate years in September.

Replacement Centre[edit]

In September 2012, talks got underway to replace the 27-year-old arena with a new £20 million facility on the same site amid claims that the arena was missing out on big acts due its comparatively small 8,000-seat capacity.[10]

On 18 October 2013, the city council announced plans to spend £200 million on a rebuild of the AECC, but also raised the possibility of relocating the venue to a new site.[11] Then on 31 October, it was announced that the go ahead had been given to the relocation, with Henry Boot as the preferred development partner. Artists impressions were released for a new centre and arena to be built at the Rowett Institute currently owned by the University of Aberdeen in the city's Bucksburn area near Aberdeen Airport and close to the Aberdeen International Business Park.

The council says the project will be completed by 2019, accommodating 10,000 people seated and 12,500 standing. Other facilities include office and leisure space, plus an adjoining 4-star Hilton hotel with options for two more.[12][13] An artist's impression the new AECC was released on 1 November 2013, together with an estimate of the final bill at around £185 million.[14]

In September 2014, public consultations took place[15] prior to the final planning application being submitted in May 2015 for the Bucksburn[16] site and redevelopment of the current AECC site at Bridge of Don.[17] Construction began in July 2016, after a ground-breaking ceremony on July 5th. [18]

The planned spending total of the new project is £333 million. In July 2018, it was announced that the new venue will be named The Event Complex Aberdeen (TECA).[19]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre". mrtarchitects.com.
  2. ^ "BDS Sponsorship is proud to announce brokering new AECC Arena title sponsorship with GE Oil & Gas – BDS Sponsorship & Commercialisation". sponsorship.co.uk.
  3. ^ "Oasisarchive – VIDEO: Oasis Aberdeen 1997". 30 September 2014.
  4. ^ "Oasis Setlist at Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre, Aberdeen". setlist.fm.
  5. ^ "Oasis Setlist at Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre, Aberdeen". setlist.fm.
  6. ^ http://news.stv.tv/north/38225-oasis-brothers-stay-in-separate-hotels-after-aberdeen-gig/
  7. ^ "Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds add Aberdeen date". STV News.
  8. ^ "Dolly Parton @ Aberdeen AECC". BIG Live Acts.
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 October 2014. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
  10. ^ http://local.stv.tv/aberdeen/news/arts-culture/189665-aecc-in-talks-over-new-20m-arena-to-bring-top-stars-to-the-city/[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ "Plans for new £200m conference venue to replace Aberdeen's AECC". STV News.
  12. ^ AECC.co.uk (31 October 2013). "New £200 million Venue for AECC Aberdeen Given Go-Ahead by City Council".
  13. ^ "AECC to be moved to a new site as part of redevelopment of venue". STV News.
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 October 2014. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
  15. ^ http://aecc.co.uk/the-venue/aecc-redevelopment/
  16. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 27 October 2015. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
  17. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 27 October 2015. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
  18. ^ "Construction Work Begins On Aberdeen's New Exhibition & Conference Centre - Henry Boot Developments". Henry Boot Developments. 2016-07-05. Retrieved 2017-12-04.
  19. ^ "New entertainment venue name revealed". BBC. 9 July 2018. Retrieved 23 July 2018 – via www.bbc.co.uk.

External links[edit]

Media related to Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre at Wikimedia Commons