'A big loss': Cancellation of second event another blow for businesses

Dunedin businesses have been served another kick following the cancellation of Guns N’ Roses’...
Dunedin businesses have been served another kick following the cancellation of Guns N’ Roses’ Dunedin concert. PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES
Dunedin business morale has been served another blow following the cancellation of the Guns N' Roses concert in November.

The American band was due to play at Forsyth Barr Stadium on November 21, but the touring company confirmed yesterday the latest outbreak of Covid-19 had forced a change of date and venue — to Auckland’s Eden Park, in December 2022.

More than 15,000 tickets had been sold to the Dunedin concert.

The band’s Wellington concert, which was due to take place a week before the Dunedin concert, was also rescheduled to the end of next year.

Promotor Teg Dainty chief executive Paul Dainty said despite best efforts and working with relevant authorities in New Zealand it became clear the concert could not proceed in 2021.

He did not elaborate on what that meant specifically.

The concert is the second major event Covid-19 forced out of the stadium this year.

The All Blacks were meant to take on South Africa last weekend in a historic test match celebrating a 100 years since the two sides first met.

It promised a $10million boost for Dunedin businesses, but was moved to Australia because of Covid-19 restrictions.

Enterprise Dunedin director John Christie said the cancellation of both events was a "double whammy" for the city.

He did not have a figure of how much the Guns N’ Roses concert would have been worth to Dunedin, but estimated it was in the millions.

Local hospitality, retail and accommodation sectors would be worst hit.

He hoped better was to come in 2022.

Dunedin Venues Management Ltd chief executive Terry Davies said things would look up next year.

But the concert and rugby test cancellations had been a "morale kicker".

"I feel for the city and the region, the small business operators around town and the fans."

He expected a rebound in international sports and concerts from about next July and was confident big international acts would visit New Zealand and Australia between October 2022 and March 2023.

"Dunedin won't miss out.

"Promoters want to bring content here," Mr Davies said.

Hospitality and accommodation sector representatives said the cancellation of the concert was disappointing, but not surprising.

Hospitality Association Otago president Mark Scully said concert-goers were often from out of town and usually spent well enjoying the city’s hospitality outlets.

"It is a big loss for the city but I can’t say it is surprising," Mr Scully said.

Otago Motel Association president Pete Firns said most accommodation businesses would have been booked out for the weekend.

"All these event cancellations are really starting to bite... It is pretty tough at the moment."

Southern fans who contacted the Otago Daily Times were disappointed and confused about why the band was not coming anymore.

Richelle Hamoton said she had had tickets since last year.

She, like others, said she did not understand why the band would not come to Dunedin when there was no Covid-19 in the city, and was concerned the South "always misses out".

Several fans said they were not sure they would book flights and accommodation in Auckland, when that might be cancelled, too.

Promoter Teg Dainty said Dunedin show ticket holders would automatically receive a full refund from Ticketmaster.

 

Comments

Mr Dainty should elaborate, or be forever associated with the epithet 'vaguely unreliable'.

 

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