Andy Burnham has said the opening of Co-op Live has "not been handled well" after the 23,500-capacity venue suffered a nightmarish start to life.

Problems for the arena started on its first test event day on April 20, with operators OVG cancelling thousands of tickets on the day to reduce the amount of punters in. Several gigs — including Peter Kay’s landmark shows as the first event-proper — were then postponed by a week, and then to later this month.

The issues, surrounding emergency service communications, appeared to be resolved by the time A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie performed on May 1 — only for some air conditioning equipment to crash down for the ceiling, forcing its cancellation as fans queued up outside.

At that point, Take That announced they would move their shows to the AO Arena, and OVG said no shows would go ahead at the £365 million Co-op Live until May 14.

“As many of you will know, it’s not been the smooth start we had planned for, and I know that has caused a huge amount of disruption and frustration to thousands of people,” said OVG’s Chief Executive, Tim Leiweke, said in confirming the delay.

“On behalf of all of us at Oak View Group, I’d like to express my sincere apologies to all those that have been affected.

"We understand that there is work to be done to rebuild your trust in us. This starts now and at the request of the naming rights partner, The Co-op Group, we will be addressing impact on affected ticket holders, details of which will be shared soon.”

Now, in his first appearance on BBC Radio Manchester’s "In The Hotseat" phone-in, the newly re-elected mayor was asked for his views of the situation.

“It’s not been good,” he said.

“We cannot have any compromise on safety, so from our side of the fence we have been very clear with the operator about that.

“This will be a great success story for Greater Manchester in time. It will increase footfall every single day of the year.

“It’s not been handled well. It was right [the operators] stepped back and took time to get things right.”

Co-op Live has told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that it expects the Elbow gig on May 14 will go ahead as anticipated.

A spokesperson added: “At this time, we do not expect further impact on our opening season.”