Is this proud city about to be snookered by a lack of capacity?

Spoiler alert – this is NOT about “Co-op Live” but cooperation might well save this venue.


“Well, good evening, You join us here in the 8th frame of the evening, with the match poised upon a knife edge that could have been forged in the fires of this proud city.”

Go on, name the city and then name the venue.

You know it’s “The Crucible”, you know it’s Sheffield.

But for how long?

Rumours are rife that Sheffield may lose the world snooker championships when their deal is up due to to a lack of capacity at this historic venue (under 1000) and to put it politely, it is a little outdated.

Now, I’m biased.

I was born in Sheffield and live just outside the city. I also have a soft spot for snooker, ever since meeting Dennis Taylor in a “Vision Express” store in Derby – we made our own fun back then OK!?

I would hate for the city to lose the finals, this is history.

The World Snooker Championships is played in Sheffield. End of.

It also brings in millions of pounds a year to the local economy. Roughly £100m over the last 40 years by some estimates.

The problem is not the brand, it is truly beloved (I’m looking at you now “Co-op Live”). The problem is the suitability.

It’s just not fit for purpose.

The media is onside, the audience is on side. Many of the players are too – if the upgrades are made.

Now there’s rumours of a Saudi-backed “Billiardrome” which would see the venue extended and expanded and brought kicking and screaming into the 21st century.

Sometimes, it’s not the marketing that’s the issue, it’s the product.

You can’t spin your way out of EVERYTHING.

Sometimes, you need to take a hard look at the product and maybe accept a little “co-op”eration.