Covid-19 delays development of word-class arts venue The Factory and promise of jobs

  • Factory set to boost Manchester economy by 1.1m over next decade
  • More than 1,500 jobs will be created by project
  • Significant impact of coronavirus has led to £45m budget increase

A new purpose-built arts space to be known as The Factory has been identified as one of the key projects which will help kick start the growth of the Manchester economy after the Covid-19 crash.

The latest phase of the Factory Academy is the Factory Future employment program which aims to benefit up to 10,000 unemployed young people.

Bosses say The Factory will create a further 1,500 jobs over the next decade that will allow the next generation of creatives in Manchester to flourish.

The Factory under construction
Construction of The Factory has been delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester city council, said: “ The Factory will not just be a world-leading arts performance space right here in Manchester – it will be one of the transformative projects powering the city’s economic recovery from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

“It will create and support jobs, attracting hundreds and thousands of visitors to the city each year, and provide a wealth of training and skills development for Manchester people to pursue careers in the creative sector.”

Factory Academy trainee Cherie Bossama said: “These opportunities have helped me develop in many different ways. I am more confident, I am more ambitious than I used to be and I have gained new transferable skills.”

The coronavirus pandemic has had a significant impact on the cost of the project. This has meant the budget has increased by £45m, taking the overall cost of the project to a monumental £186m.

Despite the challenges faced work on site is continuing and an expected date for completion has been set for December 2022.