11 May 2017

Ed Sheeran announcement fills Dunedin motels

6:57 pm on 11 May 2017

Moteliers have dampened fears Dunedin cannot handle large crowds after the announcement of Ed Sheeran's concert date filled motels within hours.

British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran performs during a concert at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam in early April.

British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran performs during a concert at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam in early April. Photo: AFP

The English pop singer confirmed yesterday he would play at Dunedin's covered stadium on 29 March next year.

Some estimates said the concert could draw up to 40,000 fans to the city.

Otago Motel Association president Sue Rhodes said her own motel, 20km from the CBD, had sold out within 13 minutes of the announcement yesterday morning, and the bigger motels were flat out all day.

"We have a duty motel system that we can look at and there were only two motels on there that had anything left out of the 50-odd motels in town.

"So it was just a complete whitewash."

The speed at which the city filled up raised questions about Dunedin's capacity.

Rick Meder, who owns the Commodore Motel in North Dunedin, said yesterday had been mad, but it would all shake down by the time of the concert.

"There's been a bit of a panic at this stage - it's not a full city by any stretch and it won't be by the time we get around to the actual time as well.

"Tickets haven't even gone on sale yet - so people are booking accommodation and they don't even have tickets - and if they don't get tickets, then they'll cancel their accommodation."

Mr Meder said the wide range of accommodation available through the internet would ensure everyone who visited would get a bed somewhere.

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