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60 per cent of the senior management team at Wyboston Lakes Resort are female and, looking at employees by pay, 49 per cent of staff in the upper quartile are women.

These are among the notable facts revealed by leading hospitality, conference and training venue Wyboston Lakes Resort’s Gender Pay Gap Report.

Mark Jones, Managing Director of Wyboston Lakes Resort says: “We are committed to ensuring that everyone is rewarded equally for their work regardless of gender, and the pay gap is closing.

“We are also committed to giving everyone equal opportunities to progress to the highest level in their careers with us and have signed the Diversity in Hospitality, Travel and Leisure Charter.”

Highly ranked in the list of Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For over the past five years, Wyboston Lakes Resort has promoted 74 individuals based on merit, 68 per cent of which have been female in the past 12 months. This is representative of the venue’s workforce, which is 63 per cent female.

To help ensure staff are developed for the future, the venue has created the Wyboston Signature Training programme. Open to all managers, supervisors and team leaders, the course consists of monthly training modules taught over eighteen months. Half of the staff on the programme are female.

Programme modules include Essential Skills, which have been specifically designed for new supervisors and managers. The Mentor Programme for middle managers, now in its third year and a 54 per cent level of female attendance, continued expansion is planned.

As part of a commitment to nurture new recruits and recent graduates, Wyboston Lakes Resort has also launched its Graduate Training Programme this year and will welcome its first intake in July.  Its internal coaching, mentoring and ongoing training programmes have seen five females promoted in to Deputy Manager roles, three in departments and two overseeing its conference venues, and this number is expected to continue increasing.

For the full report, please see

For details of the Diversity in Hospitality, Travel and Leisure Charter, please see

For more information about Wyboston Lakes Resort, please visit


Carton House based in Maynooth, Co. Kildare (Ireland) has re-joined the HBAA, the leading association for the events and hospitality industry.

The HBAA has more than 300-member organisations including over 80 agency and 225 venue members who work collaboratively in the accommodation, meetings and events sector.

Carton House is one of Ireland’s most luxurious resorts and a leading corporate and events venue. Located only 20 minutes from Dublin airport, the 1,100-acre private parkland estate encompasses a hotel, a purpose-built Events Centre and state of the art conference facilities. For whatever purpose, be it private dining in the exclusive Gold Salon, a board meeting, a seminar in the inspiring surrounds of the Library, exclusive use of the whole house or a business conference, product launch, exhibition or even a car launch in the Carton Suite, the resort offers an award-winning experience. Carton House is also home to Orangeworks, the only tailor-made teambuilding company in Ireland, two championship golf courses, a Spa and much more.

The HBAA drives, promotes and models good business between its members. It champions best practice, ethical working and sound commercial judgment, making HBAA membership the mark of quality assurance for the sector. It operates a Code of Practice which assures best practice between agents, hotels and venues.

Carlo Boersma, Director of Sales at Carton House said:

“We are delighted to re-join HBAA and look forward to building on our continued relationship with the group and its members. As a leading force in the Irish hospitality market, Carton House domestic and international business is built on best practice, customer satisfaction and ensuring that we benchmark ourselves against the best in the business. It’s important that we work together with other members to forecast expectations, set industry standards and ultimately drive direct and indirect business into and within Ireland, boosting the resort’s position and reputation as a leading corporate and events destination.”

Louise Goalen, Chair of the HBAA said; “It’s great that Carton House has re-joined the HBAA.  I’d like to welcome them back to the association and look forward to seeing many of the team at our future member events.”


Wyboston Lakes Resort has been selected as a finalist in the Conference Awards 2018 for the ‘Best Conference Venue (under 500 theatre) category.

This is the seventh consecutive year that the venue has reached the final of these highly competitive awards, which are among the most coveted titles within the conference and training sector. The awards recognise, celebrate and encourage achievement in conference and events and are judged by highly respected experts in the events industry. The winners will be announced at a ceremony on Friday 29th June at the HAC in London.

“This is further independent testimony from leading industry professionals to the quality of our conference venue and of the superb service and hard work of our teams,” commented Mark Jones, Managing Director of Wyboston Lakes Resort. “To achieve this for seven consecutive years confirms that they maintain the highest standards. It is well deserved recognition. I’m very proud of them.”

This achievement comes just after Wyboston Lakes Resort revealed plans to invest £3m to transform its premier conference venue. This will include expanding its main conference room to accommodate over 300 delegates; adding inspirational meeting areas designed for the future with creative flare and equipped with top of the range technology; introducing movable walls to expand training rooms and a total redesign and redecoration of breakout and bar areas. Work is about to start on this project.

This year Wyboston Lakes has also for the fifth year in succession earned a place in The Sunday Times ‘Best 100 Companies to work for’ List 2018.

For more information, please visit

25th April 18, UK: Johanna Byrane has returned to Twickenham in the role of Head of Business Development across the venue’s conference and events business. Johanna re-joins the stadium, following a move into the City which included a ten-year tenure at Searcys, and brings a host of experience to the role as Twickenham prepares for the launch of its iconic East Stand later this year.

Twickenham Stadium has continued to grow its conference and events business throughout 2017 and into 2018. The launch of the East Stand will be a major development for match day hospitality but also presents the opportunity to open up new markets for non-match day conference and events, with stylish break out and reception rooms for existing events, and more bespoke food and beverage led events.  

“We’re delighted to welcome Johanna back to Twickenham; our focus is to continue to build an elite conference and events product here. We want to create the best product, but also a best-in-class team,” commented Nils Braude, Catering and Conference Events Director. “The East Stand is going to open the stadium up to new events, new markets and give us the chance to have new conversations with existing customers; Johanna has the right experience to have these conversations at the highest level.”

“It’s a real privilege to return to Twickenham after 12 years and to find the venue continuing to innovate and expand its conference and events division,” commented Johanna. “This is a business  that remains close to my heart and I couldn’t be joining at a more exciting time, with a more talented team; this is going to be a big year for us all.”

Millennium Point – Birmingham Eastside’s 500,000 sq. ft anchor building – has scooped two top awards in the prestigious annual awards of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce (GBCC) in front of 1,300 guests at the International Convention Centre.

The awards were a double triumph for Millennium Point which won the top awards in both Excellence in Hospitality and Training and Excellence in Education categories beating off competition from eight short-listed organisations in each category.

“This is fantastic recognition for our team and the hard work we have been undertaking in further developing our event and hospitality offer and the huge amount of work we deliver in providing education and training facilities and support,” said Judith Armstrong, Millennium Point’s CEO.

During the past two years, event and hospitality turnover at the venue has more than doubled following an investment of £1million in the development of several new  advanced and adaptable conference & banqueting suites, and AUDITORIUM – A 350 tiered seating space with state of the art AV and lighting facilities, making it one of the largest auditoriums in the West Midlands. In addition, Millennium Point is this summer opening a brand new private office facility, as well as co-working spaces.

Millennium Point’s commercial activities are funnelled into a charitable trust (Millennium Point Trust) that grant funds specifically for training and education especially STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths). During the past four years its grant funding has totalled some £4m including the Millennium Point Scholarship that is now in its fourth year – funding students through STEM degrees and working in conjunction with Birmingham City University’s Faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Build Environment.

 “This is the first time we have entered these major awards that are a highlight in the West Midlands calendar and to be judged winners in two categories is a remarkable achievement. It spurs us on in our work – extending and further improving our events, meeting and venue facilities, providing top-notch office space and in turn supporting education especially in addressing the STEM skills gap within the region,” said Judith.

Following the success of their arts and cultural offering for organisers during spring 2018, the Barbican has extended the programme into this summer.

The Barbican Business Events team will be showcasing the offering at IMEX Frankfurt from 15-17 May 2018 on the London and Partners stand F400.

The programme provides event organisers with access to the Barbican’s world leading arts programme.

“Our initial offering in spring was greeted with such a positive reaction that we immediately started looking for ways to expand it across the calendar year," comments the Barbican’s Head of Business Events, Jackie Boughton. “As a combined arts and conference centre we are a catalyst for creativity in the commercial world. Allowing delegates to experience more than just a meeting room adds so much value to an event. It makes the content far richer and generates a long-term ROI as so much more knowledge is retained.”

The following is a snapshot of the Barbican’s world-class artistic programme for summer as part of its 2018 season The Art of Change. Tickets and exclusive access to events is subject to availability.

Full details of the Barbican’s artistic programme are available at


A new events venue is coming to London, The Grubstreet Author on Milton Street in the heart of Moorgate, is a collection of three luxuriously designed spaces, operated by the team behind The Brewery.

Occupying a previously forgotten and derelict part of the original Whitbread Brewery, the venue will fulfil the need for smaller numbers and intimate events in the City. Comprising three striking rooms, each with their own history and story to tell, The Grubstreet Author is the modern events venue to spark imagination for up to 70 guests, and perfectly suited for meetings, private dinners or product launches.

With a private entrance on Milton Street, previously known as Grub Street, the venue takes its name from the bohemian area best known for publishing houses, poets and ‘hack writers’ during the 18th Century. The venue has been given new purpose with a contemporary design approach, featuring: 

  • The Cutting Room; a fully functioning cinema auditorium for 48 people. Restored to its former glory and enhanced with the latest AV, signature lighting and tiered red velvet cinema seating creates a quirky and elegant setting.
  • The Sample Room; the former beer sampling area of the original brewery is a contemporary reception area for up to 70 to get the creative juices flowing. A metallic bar with glowing neon quill, bold herringbone floor and luxurious furnishings will become a feature for cocktail receptions and networking.
  • The Pasteur Room; named after the original room in The Brewery for beer fermenting, the stunning tiled roof and commanding burnt iron chandelier is designed for private dining for up to 70. The Pasteur Room can be used in conjunction with The Sample Room to create a separate reception space to host larger standing events.

Simon Lockwood, creative director at The Brewery commented, “We are always looking for ways to develop our offering and with the launch of The Grubstreet Author, we are adding a whole new dimension to what we can provide to event organisers and guests. We’ve seen strong demand for more intimate events with a higher personalisation and exclusivity and have endeavoured to give clients the opportunity to combine luxurious dinning and furnishings with the functionality for corporate presentations. This is a new era for the whole team and we can’t wait for our clients to see the new space and be part of the exciting future for The Brewery and its venues.”

No matter the event, if it’s a high-profile presentation, awards dinner, conference, Christmas party or wedding receptions, The Grubstreet Author is an inspiring and luxurious venue to cater for a variety of occasions.

For more information and to book, please contact the team on 020 745 678 or email


On Sunday 22nd April Church House Westminster welcomed back three charities who were all hosting their post-marathon charity events.

The British Heart Foundation, The Children’s Society and Sarcoma UK all chose the central London venue to celebrate marathon success following the Virgin Money London Marathon.

British Heart Foundation is the UK’s number one heart charity funding cardiovascular research, through 50 years of funding cutting edge research they have already made a big difference to people’s lives.  This year the charity will be represented by over 400 runners aiming to raise £950,000 as vital funds for the fight against heart disease.

Karen McDonnell, Running Project Manager at British Heart Foundation, says: “We wanted to thank our runners, and their sponsors, for their efforts and the post-race event was a great way to do this. The money they have raised will help us continue pioneering research that supports people who suffer from heart disease.”

The Children’s Society is a national charity that campaign on behalf of young people and also run services up and down the country to support children and young people who are at risk of exploitation or harm, living in care, or let down by the systems meant to protect them. This year they had a team just shy of 100 runners with the hope to raise around £200,000.

Nina Purdy, Supporter Engagement Manager from The Children’s Society said: “We are so grateful to all of our fantastic runners for their efforts and sheer dedication and the post-race event is a great way to say thank you to them.  The money they have raised will continue to help us support the most vulnerable children across the country suffering abuse, hardship and neglect.”  

This year the largest team from Sarcoma UK – the bone and soft tissue cancer charity - took on the Virgin Money London Marathon with 66 runners, and they were joined by friends and family for the charity’s After Party in the Harvey Goodwin Suite. The team was aiming to raise £180,000 to transform the lives of people affected by the disease, by funding ground-breaking research and providing personal support and expert information via its national Support Line.

Lucy Alder, Director of Fundraising said: “We’re proud of each and every one of Team Sarcoma, and wanted to celebrate their achievements with them at our After Party. They have put in hours of training to help researchers find more effective treatments. Their efforts will ensure our Support Line nurses can answer every call and email, lending a listening ear to everyone who needs it.”

Church House Westminster is one of London’s most versatile event venues. The AIM Gold accredited venue offers 19 flexible event spaces, which accommodate between 2 and 664 guests, and hosts a wide variety of events including meetings, conferences, awards ceremonies, gala dinners and receptions. For more information call 020 7390 1590 or visit


What was the busiest day last year for meetings? In which month? Was it in the early months? Or in the second half of the year?

At the beginning or end of the month?  And what day of the week was it?

What do you think?

The solution was revealed to HBAA members at the recent Members Meeting hosted by Warwick Conferences. Meetings Benchmark, which works in partnership with the HBAA to produce the Meetings Barometer, analysed over 58,000 meetings recorded in the Meetings Benchmark system last year.

The answer was…….

21 November – a Tuesday, which is on average, the busiest day of the week for holding meetings.

How close was your guess?

Last night (Thursday 19th April) VisitBritain held a Gala Dinner at Church House Westminster to celebrate the magic of British events as part of its MeetGB showcase. Over 100 event planners and buyers from North America and Europe attended the dinner to network with a high profile guest list of events industry luminaries and meetings and event suppliers from across the UK. Guests enjoyed live show entertainment and a three-course dinner followed by a live DJ and dancing.

MeetGB, hosted by VisitBritain in partnership with London & Partners, VisitEngland, Visit Wales, VisitScotland and Tourism Northern Ireland is a London-based showcase of 80 meetings and event suppliers from across the UK who have been brought together with 120 global meetings, events and incentive planners to do business at the event, from 19-20 April. Thousands of one-to-one business meetings between UK conference product suppliers and international event planners will take place at the two-day event, which also includes education sessions and the gala dinner, held at Church House Westminster last night (Thursday 19th April). 

Kerrin MacPhie, VisitBritain Head of Business Events, said: “VisitBritain’s MeetGB event has brought 100 international meeting and event planners to the UK to experience the best of the UK’s business events product. Church House Westminster is the perfect entertainment setting for us to host these buyers, with its iconic location next to Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament and its stunning architecture, historical significance and exceptional service.”

Robin Parker, General Manager at Church House Westminster, commented: “We are delighted to have been chosen as the venue for the MeetGB gala dinner, and to work with VisitBritain and their partners on such an important and prestigious event. We all know what an amazing and diverse destination Great Britain is, and this was shown last night as everyone enjoyed a stunning evening under the dome of the Assembly Hall at Church House.”

Church House Westminster is one of London’s most versatile event venues. The AIM Gold accredited venue offers 19 flexible event spaces, which accommodate between 2 and 664 guests, and hosts a wide variety of events including meetings, conferences, awards ceremonies, gala dinners and receptions. For more information call 020 7390 1590 or visit



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