Sunday, June 10, 2007


THE Echo's mysterious sponsorship deal with the new Arena came as a complete surprise to the city council's ruling Executive Board, apparently.

Councillors knew nothing about the five-year deal - until they read about it in the Echo.

And no-one is now being allowed to ask questions about how much this "historic" deal is worth to the people of Liverpool.

That's despite the fact that the entire Arena has been built with £145million worth of public money!

Councillors are being fobbed off with platitudes if they ask exactly how much the Liverpool Echo is paying for the privilege of having its name on the Arena.

The subject of how much it is worth has been carefully avoided in all the publicity. (For the obvious reasons, ed)

The Echo's contribution is 'in kind' says the law-breaker Hasitall, who has been the architect of much of the deal.

What this means is that the Arena will get loads of free advertising in the paper, whose circulation is rapidly declining and which has little audience or influence beyond the city's boundaries.

This will hardly be conducive to attracting full houses for every single gig. So we can presumably, in the future, look forward to free tickets being distributed to the city council, Echo employees, etc, to get more bums on seats.

There is also an informal understanding that the deal will mean there will be no untoward critiscism of the Arena appearing in the pages of the paper (a la Capital of Culture, then, ed)

Fireman Bradley hopes that getting the Echo even further on board will mean they become even more slavishly uncritical.

It's called buying influence...(with public money, too, ed)

But there will be no actual money in the bank for the city council, which has contributed £12million and will own and run the Arena.

The council of course is currently £29million in the red and talking about years of hefty council tax rises to pay for 2008.

The deal also depressingly underlines the small town ambitions of those who were in the know about the deal - Hasitall, fireman Bradley and Storey.

They decided to copy neighbouring Manchester's example of course, where their 'twice the size' Arena has a longstanding and very successful deal with the Manchester Evening News.

"Oh, I know, we can do a sponsorship deal with the Echo, like Manchester," said Storey, with an impressive outburst of originality and creativity.

However the M.E.N has, of course, parted with millions of pounds to get its name and brand all over the Manchester Arena.

But not a penny for Liverpool from the Echo, which of course, is owned by the hugely profitable Trinity Mirror.

In other words, we were sold short again...


Anonymous said...

Typical. They couldn't run a piss-up in a brewery. They are so frightened and so much in thrall to the Echo they would do anything to try and keep them supportive. I wonder how much we have lost....

Anonymous said...

Another shocker you couldnt make up! is there no limit to these buffoon's stitchups

Tori Blare said...

Although I think the Echo should be renamed The Liverpool Wet Nellies Supporters club paper, I am just pleased the City finally has a concert arena that does not look like a shabby seaside big top!

Tony Parrish47 said...


Anonymous said...

Just goes to show how beneficial the Echo and Lib Dems scratching each others backs can be for each other -

At least Liverpool has something to show for it this time