Big Spaces: 6 Legendary Sporting Venues

Updated: Nov 22, 2018

Need extra space for your next event? How about hosting it at an iconic and inspirational sporting venue?

Here’s a selection to get you started…

1 Emirates Stadium, Arsenal, London

Capacity: from 12 to 1,200 delegates

When the Emirates Stadium opened in 2006 it immediately stamped itself as being much more than a football venue. Capable of holding events ranging from team awaydays to exhibitions, the Emirates Stadium recently opened its newly refurbished Dial Square suite, which is named after the Woolwich Arsenal Armament Factory’s football team, formed in 1886. This impressive space looks out on to the pitch, with an abundance of natural daylight. Dial Square also offers an expansive open-plan area that can adapt to suit the size and scale of any event.

It is also the largest space at the Emirates, along with the Highbury suite, both of which can accommodate up to 1,200 delegates. Additional services at Arsenal include tours of the stadium that feature access to the directors’ entrance, the head coach’s office and the home dugout, which, of course, has been graced by some of the greats of the modern game.

2 Celtic Manor Resort, Newport

Capacity: from 6 to 1,500 delegates

Celtic Manor was the scene of the most nerve-shredding Ryder Cup played on these shores, when Europe beat the Americans by 14½ to 13½ in 2010. Located just four miles from Newport city centre, this magnificent five-star resort is set in more than 2,000 acres of panoramic parkland and has been voted C&IT ‘Top UK Conference Hotel’ for five years in a row. In 2014, Celtic Manor hosted the NATO Wales Summit, when the attendees included Barack Obama and Angela Merkel. The resort can host exhibitions, awards shows and conferences, as well as board meetings. There is also the ‘Meetings Made Fun’ package, which allows you to use the facilities at the award-winning Convention Centre throughout the day, while also giving delegates the chance to participate in one of many great activities, from golf or spa treats to fun team-building challenges.

3 Welford Road, Leicester Tigers, Leicester

Capacity: from 2 to 1,000 delegates

Put all the power, strength and energy of a winning team behind your event at a Premiership venue. Welford Road is home to the most successful side in English club rugby and, with 34 suites and almost 4,000 square metres of space, it is also an award-winning destination for exhibitions, conferences and events. Whether you are organising a meeting of minds for two people or preparing a business seminar for up to 1,000 delegates, Welford Road Stadium can cater for a variety of occasions. At selected times during the year, they will also open up the pitch, so you and your guests will feel what it’s like to be centre stage in this famous stadium. Plus, you can hire a world-class rugby professional to join your session and motivate your team.

4 Old Trafford, Manchester United, Greater Manchester

Capacity: up to 1,100 delegates

The ‘Theatre of Dreams’ is a mecca of football for visitors who come to Manchester from around the world. As a corporate venue, Old Trafford also boasts 24 suites – some with panoramic views of the pitch. Depending on the size of your event, Old Trafford can offer a boardroom, classroom, lunch and dinner set-up, a drinks reception or a mixture to make sure your delegates feel right at home. There are also over 5,000 free car-parking spaces on-site. You can further elevate your event by treating delegates to the award-winning Museum and Stadium Tour. You will be provided with your own personal tour guide who will escort delegates to every corner of Old Trafford, including the changing rooms, dugouts and players’ tunnel.

5 Ricoh Arena, Coventry, West Midlands

Capacity: from 7 to 7,000 delegates

Home of FA Cup winners Coventry City along with Premiership and European rugby champions Wasps, the Ricoh Arena is Coventry’s standout location for corporate events. It boasts a mix of state-of-the-art conference, training, banqueting, exhibition, hotel, music and sports facilities. As well as having more than 20,000 square metres of event space, there are 2,000 on-site car-parking bays two restaurants, and a casino, which is perfect for post-event entertainment.

The Ericsson Exhibition Hall has accommodated a number of large exhibitions and conferences for clients such as Trade Only, Executive Hire, Boots and Whitbread. The Ricoh Arena also has its own stage, which is modular and can be broken down for flexibility.

6 Emirates Old Trafford, Lancashire Cricket Club, Manchester

Capacity: up to 1,200 delegates

From Ian Botham’s heroics against the Aussies in 1981 and the One Love concert to remember the victims of the Manchester bombing, Emirates Old Trafford has played host to some of the city’s most famous moments. If you’re looking to host anything from a fashion show to an annual conference or the launch of a new product, the team at Emirates Old Trafford can accommodate every kind of booking. Companies such as AutoTrader, O2, Google, Unilever, Mercedes and Disney have all hosted events here. Among the host of different spaces available is The Point, which features an elevated glass-fronted suite with a balcony overlooking the famous Lancashire Cricket pitch. The room itself is flexible and can be divided into three sections, perfect for smaller events.