Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 13 July 2014

Postcode lottery for free tickets to Van Morrison show

Belfast music legend Van Morrison
Belfast music legend Van Morrison

There is expected to be a scramble for tickets to see Belfast music legend Van Morrison perform a free concert at the Ulster Hall next month when he celebrates becoming the latest freeman of his home city.

And Belfast residents will be given preference for the tickets.

The city council voted unanimously last month to offer the hit-maker behind Brown Eyed Girl, Gloria and Days Like This the freedom of the city.

It is understood the east Belfast native preferred to have a public concert and short presentation instead of a more formal ceremony bestowing the honour. He also regards the historic Ulster Hall as having been part of his career.

In keeping with these wishes, the gig on Friday, November 15, will be followed by an informal reception at Belfast City Hall as part of Belfast Music Week.

Council minutes record that Morrison's management team "had indicated that he would perform at the concert free of charge or without payment".

But there was an "expectation that the concert would be delivered to his usual high standard with full band and technical setup", with the council footing the bill for these costs, the council minutes note.

It is estimated the star's concert will cost the council around £58,000.

Tickets for the concert will be free, but will be restricted initially to applicants with a postcode inside the Belfast City Council boundary.

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