13 June 2018

Football fans across Sunderland can enjoy all the excitement of the FIFA World Cup, without leaving the city centre this summer.

As the long-awaited event kicks-off this week, the popular FanZone returns to the city streets once again, and this time it will be bigger and better than ever.

This year’s matches will all be broadcast from a 20-foot screen on the side of a double decker bus, which also features an on-board bar and seating area.

The bus will be based at Park Lane for much of the month-long event, but will also move to Low Row for some matches. It will also move to West Sunniside during Sunniside Live on 6-7 July.

The FanZone will open this Thursday, 14 June at Park Lane in time for the opening match between Russia and Saudi Arabia.

Throughout the month, visitors can take advantage of special menu offers from neighbouring bars and a full entertainment programme, while enjoying all of the football action along with other major sporting events including Wimbledon, Ascot and Formula One on days when there are no matches.

The FanZone has been organised by Sunderland Business Improvement District (BID), and Sharon Appleby, head of business operations, is looking forward to seeing the city come together to celebrate a month of fun.

“In 2016 we launched a FanZone for football fans to follow the Euro matches, but we wanted to bring it back bigger and better for the World Cup,” she said. “We have created a packed programme this year, featuring all the games as they happen.

“We’ve worked closely with all of the businesses and hopefully that partnership has resulted in really exciting events which will have something for people of all ages and which you don’t have to be a sports fan to enjoy.

“Our aim was to make the city centre somewhere for everyone to enjoy the fun this summer, and we look forward to welcoming visitors and guests as part of our amazing Summer in the City events.”

The FanZone will open at Park Lane this Thursday, ahead of the opening match which kick-off at 4pm.

For full times, listings and to discover where the bus will be and when, visit the Sunderland BID website:  www.sunderlandbid.co.uk