A refurbished Odeon will give the people of Bradford a boost in so many ways. The campaign to save the building from demolition has enjoyed huge support over the past decade, and what a reward that would be! The regeneration of the city centre has frustrated the Bradford public so much, and whilst the City Park has proved to be a step into the light, the Westfield situation continues to blight our city. The Odeon‘s rebirth is a more realistic proposal at this time, and the opportunity should be grabbed with both hands.
The Odeon building is truly historic. The appearances by The Beatles, Tom Jones and Buddy Holly (to name but a few) are well-documented and are now considered legendary, but the Odeon is also THE surviving example of early 20th Century Super-Cinema in the country. The legacy of the building is also pivotal to so many people in the city on a personal level as this is the place where they met their life partners. There’s much more to the Odeon’s general contribution to the city of Bradford than just good old nostalgia!
It was identified a few years ago that Bradford deserved a “World Class” venue, and the Odeon building fits the bill in every single way possible. The cultural offer extends much further than just providing live concerts to the young and old in the city. The huge auditorium could host the Bollywood Award ceremonies that should have always been held in Bradford over the years but never was. The ballroom wing could be used to showcase art and international cuisine in the restaurant. The possibilities are endless.
The beauty of the Odeon building is we have a ready made asset waiting to be used again. The construction of the building was so intricate and you could not afford to build something so grand and iconic in 2013. The refurbished Odeon would not only bring additional jobs and revenue to the city centre, its partnership with the Alhambra and Media Museum would also bring vibrancy to that particular crescent of entertainment and leisure facilities. Bradford has already lost too many valuable buildings in the last 50 years.