The National Exhibition Centre is the UK’s largest exhibition centre. Located next to Birmingham Airport and Birmingham International Airport, it contains the Genting Arena and has famously been the venue of the international dog show Crufts since 1991.
The NEC was opened by Queen Elizabeth II on 2 February 1976 and has been expanded several times in the intervening years. It now possesses 20 halls spanning 611 acres, giving it unparalleled power to host even the largest exhibitions year after year. Just a few examples of the exhibitions that the NEC has attracted include Comic Con, Autosport International and the British International Motor Show, which took place at the centre between 1978 and 2004.
Perhaps the main NEC hall is the Genting Arena, its multipurpose indoor arena that can reach a huge capacity of 16,000 people. The Arena opened in 1980 with a concert from Queen and has welcomed luminaries from across the music world ever since, as it aims to compete with the Manchester Arena in Manchester and the O2 Arena in London.