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10/2019

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As part of an ongoing drive to maximise sustainability, BMA House has reduced its delegate carbon footprint by 69% over the last four years, whilst reducing water usage by 5.4 million litres per year.

Using Green Tourism to measure its carbon footprint on a per delegate basis BMA House has seen a reduction to 2.8kg per delegate from 9kg per delegate in 2014. 

In addition, surveys, recommendations and subsequent work by Thames Water is estimated to save 5.4million litres of water per year.

Measures taken to achieve these figures include:

  • As of February 2016, BMA House achieved zero-to-landfill status - all waste produced is either recycled or recovered.
  • Since January 2019 BMA House has recycled 46,760kg of waste and saved 140 trees.
  • As of March 2019, staff introduced a crisp packet recycling scheme where empty packets are collected, taken to a TerraCycle location and processed into plastic pellets to make new recycled products.
  • Upgraded PIR and LED based lighting around the building to reduce energy usage.
  • Digital way-finding signage to reduce the need for paper signs and wastage.
  • Water saving devices on toilets instead of standard flushes decrease wastewater.
  • Sustainable and locally sourced food ingredients deliver a host of sustainable and health benefits.
  • In-house caterers support fair trade tea and coffee growers.
  • On-site cycle racks for those travelling by bike as well as work with Cross River Partnership to promote a ‘Clean Air Walking Route’ from Kings Cross provide delegates with a ‘cleaner’ journey to BMA House. The route takes guests off the busy Euston Road on to backstreets where air pollution is 57% lower
  • The removal of all plastic takeaway cutlery and take away straws from food outlets and the introduction of ‘Keep Cups’ with a staff incentive to reuse them. 
  • BMA House does not provide plastic water bottles in meetings and filter all water on-site into glass bottles.
  • Since introducing new reusable plastic food containers earlier this year, BMA House has reduced the need for disposable plastic food containers by 98%.
  • Working with organisations that support and promote sustainable events. BMA have for example partnered with consultant, Karen Sutton from the Global Good Awards, who advises event planners on how to put on a sustainable event.

“We are placing sustainability at the heart of everything we do here at BMA House.  We believe it is the right thing to do, despite the challenges presented by a Grade II listed building dating back to 1911,” comments Kat Winfield, venue manager from BMA House.  “Our success is down to hard work and commitment to support sustainable initiatives in every possible way.  However, the most important factor in our success is that our team has taken these initiatives on board, undertaken training to be fully aware of what we are doing and wherever possible are encouraged to share our sustainability story with clients.  The result is a list of incredible achievements and most recently a decision to sign up, via London & Partners, to the ‘Mayor’s 3 Commitments for Hospitality and Sustainability’ which aim for a zero carbon London by 2050, zero waste commitment, and best practice guidance for individuals.”

For further information on holding a sustainable event at BMA House, please contact the events team on 020 7874 7020 or visit http://www.bmahouse.org.uk/

Burleigh Court Conference Centre and Hotel at Loughborough University has retained its four-star hotel rating from VisitEngland.

The hotel has also retained its Silver Award - which celebrates accommodation establishments that outperform in their category – and a Breakfast award.

During the assessment, Burleigh Court was judged in six different areas and received an overall score of 85%. The areas were: bedrooms, bathrooms, cleanliness, hospitality, food and service.

The hotel was praised for its excellent standards of housekeeping, the staff’s hospitality and willingness to react to requests from guests, and the wide range of facilities offered to guests in the newly refurbished bedrooms.

Burleigh Court, which is part of Imago Venues, was also commended for its high standards of cleanliness and scored 100% in this area.

Keith Barber, Head of Venues at Imago Venues, said: “Retaining our VisitEngland accreditations is a testament to our commitment to service quality.

“The VisitEngland awards are about recognising excellence, which is what we strive to achieve in all areas of the business. This achievement is evidence of the hard work of every single member of staff at Burleigh Court and I’m very proud of the team.”

The seventh annual PinkNews Awards, which celebrates LGBT+ role models, took place at Church House Westminster on 16 October and was sponsored by Amazon. Nancy Pelosi, RuPaul's Drag Race star Baga Chipz, Love Island's Anton Danyluk and Gina Miller all showed their support for LGBT+ rights.

Members of the press arrived from 5pm to the Bishop Partridge Hall, which was a designated red-carpet press room for interviews throughout the evening. The 300 guests enjoyed a drinks reception in the Hoare Memorial Hall before taking their seats for the awards ceremony in the Assembly Hall just before 7pm. 

In a video message, Boris Johnson’s welcoming speech pledged that all LGBT people will ‘feel safe at school’.

Jeremy Corbyn introduced himself at the PinkNews Awards by sharing his pronouns, before delivering a rousing speech about the need for progress on LGBT+ issues. The Labour leader then presented the Drama Award to EastEnders for outstanding LGBT+ representation.

Baroness Susan Williams of Trafford, minister of state for equalities, said confirmed that she is committed to reform of the Gender Recognition Act. The Minister of State for Equalities also announced the winner of the PinkNews Business Equality Award, which was won by Manchester Airport.

In a pre-recorded message, Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the US House of Representatives, gave a powerful message of support for her UK counterpart John Bercow and said it was an honour to congratulate the evening’s Special Award recipient, her friend, speaker John Bercow. He proudly took to the stage to accept the award in recognition of his tireless support of LGBT+ issues during his 22-year political career.

Shadow Home Secretary, Diane Abbott presented the annual Broadcast Award to ITV News for investigative report “Gay cure therapy uncovered”.

Andrew Moffatt, the Birmingham schoolteacher and creator of the LGBT-inclusive No Outsiders programme, was the winner of the Role Model award.

John Barrowman presented “ground-breaking” TV creator Russell T Davies with a lifetime achievement award. Davies was honoured for his contributions to LGBT+ representation on television, including Queer as Folk, Cucumber, A Very English Scandal and upcoming AIDS drama Boys.

Sir Keir Starmer spoke about helping fight to repeal anti-gay laws in Commonwealth countries before presenting the Public Sector Equality Award jointly to Northumbria Police and the Welsh Assembly.

Dawn Butler, Labour MP, gave a powerful speech on the delays to Gender Recognition Act (GRA) reform. The Shadow Women and Equalities Secretary also announced that the Intercom Trust was the winner of the PinkNews Community Group of the Year.

Anti-Brexit campaigner Gina Miller gave a moving speech on empathy as she honoured Ruth Hunt, former CEO of Stonewall UK, who won Campaigner of the Year. Hunt, who couldn’t attend the awards ceremony in person, gave an acceptance speech by video message, and said the award was a “real honour”.

Several auction prizes were also announced during the evening by John Barrowman, Angela Rayner and Baga Chipz. 

Robin Parker, General Manager at Church House, commented: “We were delighted to host this awards dinner. It was exciting to see such a mix of politicians and celebrities together, celebrating the progress of LGBT+ rights.”. 

Inntel have recently appointed John Davey as its’ new Head of Business Travel.  John joins Inntel with a career in the business travel industry spanning 26 years.  During this time he has managed flagship offices for some of the largest Travel Management Companies in London with responsibility for servicing major blue chip client organisations. 

In his new role, John will manage the business travel operations teams, mentoring Inntel’s Business Travel Consultants and continuing the customer service excellence that Inntel’s clients already enjoy.

John said ‘Inntel are well regarded within the industry for their fantastic meetings, events and business travel offering, but the aspect of the company that I am most excited about is the culture of the business and its’ people.   It is the most positive that I have experienced throughout my 28 years in the industry.   I’m really looking forward to managing an already strong team and I’m hoping that my experience can elevate the business travel team to even higher levels of service’.

Douglas O’Neill, Inntel CEO said ‘I’m delighted that John has joined us at such an exciting time.  Together with our strong teams and leading technology, his wealth of experience and ambition will be a huge asset to Inntel and our clients’.

 

A focus on sustainability in hospitality and events will provide venue and agency members with valuable insights and best practice at the HBAA Members Meeting which will take place at the Aubrey Park Hotel near St Albans on 1 November.

Guest facilitator Briony Pete, a passionate sustainable development expert, will lead thought-provoking discussions, with a specially curated wide-ranging agenda covering this important, high profile business-critical topic on which venues and buyers will share their experiences, ideas and best practice.

After a brief overview of ISO standards in this area relevant for venues and agencies, the team from OLIO, the zero-food waste solution will explain how events, venues, caterers and corporates can use their mobile app which connects those with surplus food to those who need or wish to consume it.

Mark Spivey from Maritim Hotels will then reveal the hotel group’s comprehensive sustainability initiatives which include a dedicated consultant at each hotel, solar panels on roofs and efficient use of water before several HBAA venue members showcase their sustainability innovations and share their best practice.

Providing the buyer perspective, corporate and agency panellists will share their thoughts on what sustainability means to them and their organisation before keynote speaker Laura Try explains how sustainability has impacted and influenced her life choices, changing from shopaholic beauty shop owner to minimalist long distance rower, creating an inspiring conclusion to the day.

Angie Mason, Chair of the HBAA said: “Sustainability is the currently the most frequently raised topic in the hospitality and events industry worldwide. This packed programme will allow venues and agencies to gain exclusive insight into how to address the rising demand for environmentally friendly facilities and services across the industry and develop a culture of sustainability in business.”

www.hbaa.org.uk

New research conducted by Lime Venue Portfolio, in partnership with BCD Meetings and Events, has underlined the need for the event industry to take a lead in tackling food waste. The findings form part of Chapter One of the Beyond Food Report, which is out today, and puts a spotlight on the issue and encourages organisers to take steps to address it.

The research surveyed over 60 event organisers and showed that:

  • just under a third of event professionals admit to throwing away at least 15% of the food they commission at events;
  • with 18% saying it was closer to 20% and;
  • 2% claiming that the amount exceeded 20%

“Every day we hear about food shortages in the world, and we should be all playing our part to reduce food waste wherever we can. Event organisers are well placed to advise and support clients, caterers and venues with their food orders and work with them to tackle this issue,” commented Jo Austin, Sales Director, Lime Venue Portfolio.

Jo continued; “These findings are alarming but won’t be completely surprising to those who work in the industry. We all know too well how the fear of running out can lead to over ordering, but these statistics lay bare the amount of food waste that is being generated, that could be prevented. As leaders in the events industry, I’m proud that Lime Venue Portfolio are bringing this issue to light and looking at practical and measurable ways to solve it.”

The research also demonstrated how important tackling food waste is to delegates at an event. The survey also demonstrated that of all food-based event feedback, a high proportion was on waste. Further findings of the research also show the types of food that are being wasted;

  • Salad accounts for just under 40%
  • Breads at 16%
  • Desserts at 13% and;
  • Vegetable side dishes at 11%

The groups that were thrown away least were ‘alternative tastes such as spicy food (1.5%), ‘fruit’ and ‘alternative mains e.g. gluten, vegan, veg etc.’, which accounted for just under 5% each respectively.

As well as highlighting the subject of food waste, the report also looks address it, with some top tips in avoiding #FORO;

  • Bring guests into the conversation, from the outset.
  • Get the numbers right
  • Create new menu formats, plants then meat
  • Use everything
  • Get chefs out into the event
  • Share the numbersg

John Kelly, Director, Marketing EMEA, BCD Meetings & Events, commented, “We need a modern approach to food. We need to break up traditional formats of buffet spreads and gala dinners and incorporate food in a way that adds to the experience. For me, it’s about getting the chefs out onto the floor, cooking to order and interacting with the guests. This maintains a stronger control over what’s going out and how much wastage there is.”

 

The success of Product Earth 2019 at NAEC Stoneleigh has led to a five-year deal between the venue and the show’s organisers.

Product Earth, now in its fourth year, is the UK’s longest running and largest cannabis, hemp and CBD trade expo. The show was held at NAEC Stoneleigh, nestled in the heart of Warwickshire’s countryside, for the first time last month.

The world-famous NAEC already hosts around 250 events a year including prestigious events such as The Horse of The Year Show, The British Show Jumping National Championships and prominent agricultural technical events such as the British Pig & Poultry show and Grassland & Muck.

This new deal puts the NAEC on the map at the centre of the nascent, rapidly growing UK cannabis and hemp industry by entering into this mutually beneficial partnership with Product Earth.

The success of the 2019 event combined with the ambitious future growth plans have led to an agreement for the NAEC to become the home of Product Earth for the next five years.

Visitors to the 2019 Product Earth had the opportunity to sample and buy products from over 130 businesses in the cannabis, hemp and CBD industries.

Education about cannabis and hemp are fundamental to the Product Earth experience, and there were talks, panels and seminars from innovators and pioneers on various aspects of hemp and cannabis.

Product Earth is unique in being held over multiple days with various camping options for those who want to make the most of the entire experience, and the NAEC estate provided a visually stunning backdrop for the weekend event.

Product Earth founder James Walton said: “NAEC Stoneleigh and Product Earth really are the perfect match.

“The NAEC sits at the heart of the UK’s agricultural life and is physically located in the centre of the country. With its unique combination of immense exhibition space and countryside setting, we had no hesitation about committing to a long-term partnership with Stoneleigh.

“It is a forward-thinking, ambitious venue and the ideal location to host an exciting, innovative show such as Product Earth.”

Chris Hartley, managing director of NAEC Stoneleigh, said: “We couldn’t be more thrilled about working with Product Earth for the next five years.

“The show was a massive success and reflects the ever-increasing interest in CBD, hemp and cannabis.

“This is a big show, with even bigger ideas for the future, and we were delighted that they made great use of our large indoor halls and our immense outdoor space.”

For more information about NAEC Stoneleigh, visit www.naecstoneleigh.co.uk. For more information about Product Earth, visit www.productearthexpo.com.

Imago Venues at Loughborough University has launched a virtual 360 tours on its websites to enable guests and event organisers to experience its venues from the click of a button.

The new 360 experience will enable visitors to the website to have access to all areas of Imago Venues’ hotels and conference centres - so they can view every corner of the venue.

A dollhouse function, which opens a 3D model when it is clicked on, enables guests to virtually drop into a room of their choice. This gives people a sense of the layout, room proximity, breakout spaces and refreshment areas.

Rob Chamberlain, marketing manager at Imago Venues, said: “We understand people are busy and can’t always commit to time out of their busy schedule. So, we thought it was important bring our experience directly to our customers.

“With our new 360 VR tour, we can now deliver an authentic and fully immersive experience to our customer’s personal device and let them know exactly what they can expect from their event.”

Imago Venues portfolio consists of Burleigh Court Conference Centre and Hotel, the Elite Athlete Centre and Hotel, Holywell Park Conference Centre, the Link Hotel and Loughborough University campus.

To experience the tours, visit https://www.welcometoimago.com/360-tours/

The Barbican welcomed more than 150 buyers from the corporate, agency and association sectors to a high profile showcase last night that highlighted the venue’s wide range of flexible meeting, conference and event spaces.

Less than a week after winning gold in the CSR and Sustainability category at The London Venue Awards, the Barbican opened its doors to a host of past, present and potential clients including Banks Sadler, Bafta, British Heart Foundation, Cartier, Encore Tickets, The Embassy of Belgium, Kuoni, ITV, White Production, UK Council for Psychotherapy, The Tavistock Institute and Tracoin Services.

The event shone a spotlight on the venue’s Garden Room, Conservatory, Terrace and Frobisher event spaces, which include London’s second largest glasshouse conservatory – ideal for hosting receptions of up to 650, meeting spaces including two auditoriums - capable of theatre style events up to 250 and one of the City of London’s most technically advanced boardrooms.

“We are always looking for new and creative spaces for our events but as a charity we are often limited in our choices and have until now discounted London. The Barbican has changed our perceptions of what is available though,” said Annabel Navarro from The Tavistock Institute.  “It’s flexible and high-quality spaces, combined with superb food, great catering and award-winning sustainability initiatives make it a great fit for us and we are looking forward to exploring opportunities to bring our events to the Barbican.”

Lisa Sellick Tracoin Services Ltd added: “As a first-time visitor to the Barbican, tonight has totally changed my perspective of the venue. In particular I have been impressed by the flexible spaces and greenery on display in areas such as the conservatory and garden room. I will certainly consider the venue for future events amongst our international client base.

Jackie Boughton, head of Barbican Business Events concludes: “Tonight has been a tremendous success.  We have welcomed many of the UKs leading brands, organisers and associations.  It has been a real pleasure not just to host them but to also highlight our award-winning offer.”

The event was supported by the Barbican’s catering provider, Searcy’s as well as Worldspan, who provide event services and solutions for corporate’s using the venue.

Harrogate’s Majestic Hotel has begun a new chapter in its 119-year history with it becoming the town’s first DoubleTree by Hilton.

Following an extensive £15m programme of refurbishment, the new look DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate Majestic Hotel & Spa was officially unveiled today (Wednesday, September 18) by the town’s MP, Andrew Jones.

Over the last 18-months the 184-bedroom venue – which over the years has welcomed royalty, heads of state, Hollywood A-listers and rock superstars - has undergone a full refurbishment of its restaurant, lounge bar, reception, lounge public areas, 14 meeting, event and function suites, and guest bedrooms.

The hotel is home to “Frederick’s Bar and Piano Lounge”, a beautifully transformed new venue serving everything from specialty coffees through to amazing cocktails.

Additionally, “Carter’s Champagne Bar and Grill” is a destination restaurant in the old ballroom, which is set to attract a host of new clientele to the venue.

Running alongside the refurbishment of the hotel, which was purchased by The Cairn Group in 2016, is the redevelopment and transformation of its former leisure club into The Harrogate Spa.

When completed, this new facility will boast 12.5m indoor pool and six treatment rooms, two of which are double and tranquil relaxation lounge. It will offer a range of therapeutic thermal experiences, including a spa pool, Himalayan salt sauna, steam room, Rasul, experience shower and ice fountain.

In addition, there will be a courtyard terrace and Zen garden, fully equipped gym and dance studio.”

Simon Vincent, President, EMEA Hilton, said: “The town of Harrogate is the perfect spot to explore all that Yorkshire has to offer which is why we are excited to be opening our first property here.”

Shawn McAteer, Senior Vice President and Global Head, DoubleTree by Hilton, said: “As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of DoubleTree by Hilton this year, we are thrilled to be expanding the brand’s presence in even more historic locations.

“New openings such as DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate Majestic Hotel & Spa continue to highlight our legacy and our commitment to providing guests with a warm welcome and comfortable stay.”

Matthew Hole, DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate Majestic Hotel & Spa General Manager, said: “We are delighted that the Majestic Hotel is now the DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate Majestic Hotel & Spa. And at £15m, this is a significant investment by the Cairn Group.

“This hotel has an incredibly long and rich history, and today marks the start of a new era. We are very grateful to Andrew Jones MP for officially ‘opening’ the DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate Majestic Hotel & Spa and helping us celebrate this momentous occasion.”

Andrew Jones, MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough, said: It was my honour to officially ‘open’ the DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate Majestic Hotel & Spa, just days before Harrogate hosts the world’s most prestigious cycling tournament.

“This is the latest large hotel in the town centre to benefit from a significant programme of investment, and is another major boost for the District’s leisure and conference trade.

“The Cairn Group is to be applauded for its vision for the Majestic and today heralds a new era for this grand old lady.”
 

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