Skip to main content


You are: home > news archive > 03/2020

the eastside rooms has continued the creation of its senior management team with the appointment of Ross Hogarth as the venue’s Revenue Manager. Ross joins the new meetings and events facility from the Radisson Hotel Group and will be our lead on all commercial aspects of the venue, from proactive sales to pricing and booking procedures.

Ross brings with him a wealth of knowledge in the hospitality industry, having previously worked for Intercontinental Hotels & Resorts and QMH, before spending the last seven years at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Birmingham. There, he held a variety of roles, most recently as Revenue Office Manager.

“the eastside rooms will be one of the most exciting event venues in the country, attracting new clients and events into Birmingham as the city continues its renaissance into one of Europe’s leading events destinations,” commented Ross. “How we work with the industry now, as we come out of a really turbulent period, will say a lot about our business, our support for our customers, and how we want to represent the city as a place that wants to host great meetings and events.”

“Ross is incredibly well known across the meetings and events industry but is also hugely experienced on a local level; he’s our Mr Birmingham,” commented Matt Huddart, Regional General Manager, the eastside rooms. “the eastside rooms has so much protentional in this market, and we wanted someone who completely gets the customer, and puts them at the centre of every commercial decision we make. Ross has proved himself over and over again in this respect.”

The eastside rooms will launch in the Autumn 2020 and will become one of the most connected new venues in the UK, just a few minutes’ walk from the new HS2 build and connected to three other rail links and four airports.

Yarnfield Park Training and Conference Centre, part of The Venues Collection, set up a pop up market stall to sell their surplus fruit and vegetables to the community. Staff set up the stall in the conference centre’s foyer and invited members of the local community via Facebook to buy produce at supermarket prices.

Jason Petty, general manager of Yarnfield Park said: “We wanted to do something to help our local community whilst ensuring that the fruit and veg we had at our venue did not go to waste. The village of Yarnfield - where the Centre is located - has many retired residents but does not have a local shop so many of them have been unable to get to the supermarkets in the nearby towns. The stall was a success and we sold out in just a couple of hours!”

The stall was manned by Centre staff and operated with stringent safety measures – including a distancing queuing system, contactless payments and sanitisers for customers to use before entering the building. Staff were protected with gloves and masks to ensure their safety.

Yarnfield Park Training and Conference Centre is located in Staffordshire and is one of eight venues within The Venues Collection.

The inaugural Sustainable Event Awards (SEA), celebrating environmentalism across worldwide events, suppliers and venues, is to go ahead.

Organised by the Event Industry News team, sponsored by GES, supported by the Sustainable Event Alliance and by the gamut of industry associations, SEA open to entries from April 1st. Winners will be announced on September 1st.

SEA made big waves with the market when it launched in early February, a sought-after recognition for the companies and individuals committed to controlling and curtailing emissions all over the event map.

In Covid-19 lockdown, where the massive brake in pollution statistics, everywhere, is one of very few positives, the SEA reaction continues – multi-platform messages and old school phone calls asking about the awards’ mechanics, getting involved, the occasion and how entries will be evaluated.

Sustainable Event Awards co-founder, Adam Parry, comments: “In a time of extraordinary crisis, in every sector, we’re so pleased to be able to carry on with the Sustainable Event Awards, which accommodates the ‘work at home’ instruction, and recognise the greenest thinkers in the event-world.

“We were determined SEA should have as close to zero carbon footprint as possible. The submission process is all via the website, our 20-strong panel of judges, which includes representatives from the AEO, the Sustainable Energy Council, A Greener Festival and World Wildlife Fund UK, will work remotely and winners will be announced by way of a virtual ceremony.”

Meegan Jones, president of the Sustainable Event Alliance, said: “It has been extremely rewarding in these last few years to see the massive uptake and serious attention given to sustainable event management practices and the realisation by event owners and sponsors, that events can be powerful advocates and platforms for positive change. Now is the perfect time to launch the Sustainable Event Awards.

“We are excited to be part of the Awards, which with its rigorous assessment criteria is designed to shine a light on the truly global leaders in event sustainability excellence.

“We look forward to reviewing, acknowledging and celebrating this excellence, across a terrific range of event sectors and supplier categories.”

GES EMEA managing director, Jason Stead, said: “We are proud to be a part of the Sustainable Event Awards. This is such an important topic and something we are committed to at GES.

The Awards will be a great opportunity to celebrate, to learn from others who are leading the way in making our industry more sustainable and to raise awareness globally.”

Visit the SEA website for categories, entry process and judging panel updates. Subscribe to the newsletter for SEA announcements.

In the midst of all this worry and uncertainty, we believe it’s important to remain positive and continue to share good news where it can be found.


SilverDoor is delighted to be able to announce that, on the occasion of our twentieth anniversary, our shareholders, Marcus and Angie Angell, have promoted Stuart Winstone, to Group CEO of SilverDoor.


We recognise that, to many, it may seem like a strange time to announce a change of executive lead for a company. However, this is an appointment that has been 18 months in careful planning and anyone who has ever met Marcus Angell will know that it will take more than a global pandemic to steer him from a course he feels is the right one for SilverDoor. As a business, we strongly believe that, while the next few weeks and months will be very challenging, SilverDoor will weather the storm and come through these turbulent times stronger.

After twenty successful years as Managing Director, Marcus Angell’s title will change to Founder and Chairman. In recent years Marcus’ day to day role in the running of SilverDoor has been increasingly focused on strategic growth opportunities, rather than the day to day operational side of the business for some time, and this change of his role reflects, not only this, but also the increasingly global nature of our company.

Stuart will continue to work closely with Marcus, supported by the Board of Directors.

“In taking up this appointment, I recognise that our business, and the whole world, has been sent an enormous challenge and my primary focus over the coming months is to guide us through this period and come out stronger for it.

"With the outstanding team we have here at SilverDoor, I believe we will come out of it, and more resilient than before. I’m really encouraged, for instance, when I see that our APAC region is already starting to show signs of recovery.

“I want to reassure all our partners and clients that we are still here for them, and will be here and even better equipped to hit the ground running when widespread global travel resumes.
“SilverDoor continues to have ambitious growth plans. Over the last year, and with the support of the owners, Directors and Senior Management Team, we have prepared and implemented a new five year business plan packed full of goals that I would like us to achieve over the coming years.

“We have planned extensive investment in our people, our technology, new office facilities, online booking and systems integrations to enable more clients to access our portfolio instantly.

“We hope to grow all our five global offices; the next few years will see the refurbishment of our new Lancaster office, we intend to do the same in London, and expect both our APAC and Americas offices to be expanding significantly.” Stuart Winstone, CEO, SilverDoor.

Founder and Chairman, Marcus Angell went on to say:

“I have had the most truly fabulous twenty years as the Managing Director of SilverDoor Apartments. I'm equally looking forward to many, many more years ahead as its company Chairman. Thank you to every single one of you in our wide SilverDoor family for your business, support and commitment over the past two decades.

“Angie and I couldn’t be happier to be announcing Stuart’s promotion today. The redefinition of my role feels natural and right and I am very much looking forward to supporting Stuart to focus on leading SilverDoor into its next 20 years.

"Stuart has been at my right hand for the last 13 years, he knows the hospitality and business travel industry and our business inside out and I could not think of a steadier pair of hands to guide us through this difficult period and come out stronger for it.” Marcus Angell, Founder and Chairman, SilverDoor.

Everyone at SilverDoor wishes Stuart the most heartfelt congratulations and thanks for so many years of dedicated service. We all look forward to the future with him as the new CEO of our business.

HBAA will run further Mental Health webinars for the travel, event and hospitality industry following the strong demand for some of its first sessions.This was the start of activities being created by HBAA to support its members and help the industry cope with the issues that the pandemic is causing today and in the future.

The next webinar, open to members, on Thursday 2 April, will focus on Digital Detoxing and will be led by Alex La Via, founder of Live More Offline, which offers coaching and training on digital wellness. The webinar will share how healthy digital habits can make a real difference to how we experience life during COVID-19. It will explore practical steps to address four key issues at this time: wellbeing, focus, isolation and sleep.

Alex La Via said: “COVID-19, home working and social distancing make Digital Wellbeing a vital part of caring for our wellbeing. Many people are feeling the impact of compulsive news checking, blurred lines between home and work, increased screen time and want to know how to create meaningful and nourishing connection over digital platforms.”

During the first webinars, which addressed the mental health impact of coronavirus on people in the industry, registrants received advice on everything from self-care and managing stress to coping strategies for self-isolation and working from home.

Among the participants’ greatest concerns were being disciplined working from home; dealing with uncertainty; having to change coping strategies because the ones that they normally use are not available to them; and coping with increased anxiety levels.

The Mental Health webinars are part of the HBAA’s Mental Health campaign which was launched 18 months ago to raise awareness and empower organisations to tackle the growing issue across the sector.

Following the positive feedback on the first two webinars, the HBAA will run another “Self-care and wellbeing” webinar for members on 3 April. This will again be led by Gavin Percy of Balancing Edges who is a Mental Health First Aider and Mental Health First Aid Instructor and is an expert in this field. Percy will also host another on ‘Dealing with Anxiety and Stress’ on 14 April.

Leigh Cowlishaw, HBAA past Chair and Board member who is supporting the initiative, said: “At this time, it is more important than ever for the HBAA to take steps to protect the mental health and wellbeing of our members and the wider industry. The impact of uncertainty on mental health is a long-known cause of anxiety because it makes it difficult to prepare for events and to control them.

Key dates and how to register:


Digital Detoxing - Thursday 2 April at 12:30pm


Self-care and wellbeing – Friday 3 April at 3:00pm


Dealing with Anxiety and Stress - Tuesday 14 April at 11:00am

Registration details will be released in due course.


The Apartment Service has recently published the 8th edition of the Global Serviced Apartments Industry Report – GSAIR. A copy can be downloaded here: or send an email to


Buildings all over the UK will be blue-lit as a salute to the NHS at 8pm on Thursday 26 March.  Professionals in the events and entertainment industry are joining together to generate a nationwide light show illuminating landmarks and historic buildings.

The campaign was inspired by the NHS Clap For Our Carers campaign. Events and entertainment industry leaders wanting to create a simultaneous show of support, are contacting every major building and landmark in the UK to invite them to #lightitblue.

We are specifically targeting buildings and landmarks with existing LED technology, so that we will be adhering to the NHS’s critical messaging for everyone to stay home. To date, we have contacted over 60 theatres, bridges, cathedrals, castles, iconic sports stadiums and national landmarks.  The list of venues and locations already planning to turn blue on Thursday night includes The O2, the Royal Albert Hall and Bristol City Football Club.  Many other national landmarks are hoping to come onboard.

The events and entertainment industry finds itself in an unprecedented state of enforced inaction.  The best thing we can do, apart from staying home and looking after our families, is to send out a massive thank you to all of the healthcare professionals who are going to be risking their own health to save people made seriously ill by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our industry leaders also feel a responsibility for the mental health of countless employees who are feeling anxious and confused about the future. We believe that the #lightitblue campaign will galvanize their enthusiasm and pride in a mass gesture of solidarity.

It is planned that after buildings across the UK have turned blue on Thursday night, the campaign will roll in the personal and digital space, so that people will be inspired to add their own versions of the message, and the national vote of thanks for the NHS will reverberate from every home.

As the first practical initiative to support HBAA members within the travel, event and hospitality industry at this time, on Wednesday 25 March the trade association will host the first of a series of webinars to help event and hospitality professionals protect their mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus crisis and beyond.

The initiative is part of the HBAA’s Mental Health campaign to raise awareness and empower organisations to tackle the growing problem across the sector and to support HBAA members during these tough times.

The first 40-minute webinar, which will be launched next week, will feature a range of topics, including how to manage the current pressures of working in the industry, how to cope during self-isolation and tips on working from home, followed by a Q&A.

The session will be led by mental health first aid trainer Gavin Percy, who is Managing Director of Balancing Edges Consultancy, which provides specialist mental health training courses for the industry.

This first live webinar, which will be available for a maximum of 25 HBAA members, will take place twice on Wednesday 25 March, first at 1pm and again at 8.30pm.

To support the wider industry, future webinars in the coming weeks will be made available to non-members too. This will include collaboration with other mental health and wellbeing experts to broaden the subject as well as the reach of delivery. 

Leigh Cowlishaw, HBAA past Chair and Board member who is leading the initiative, said: “It is now more important than ever to act quickly and support our members and the wider industry. We are all challenged right now, both personally and professionally, and we need to ensure that we have support and tool kits to look after ourselves and those around us. This situation is beyond us washing our hands.”

To register for the first HBAA Mental Health webinars, click the links below:

Link for the 1pm session Wed 25th March -

Link for the 8:30pm session Wed 25th March -

Lex Butler, Chair, HBAA commented

“With his financial support initiatives today (Friday),  the Chancellor has thrown welcome life belts to  every business in the hospitality and events industry to keep them afloat. But with so many on the verge of sinking, especially now that bars and restaurants are all ordered to close, it is vital that these funds reach the businesses urgently. It may be too late for some.”

Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa, the 4 red star luxury Hotel in Newmarket, Suffolk, has crowned Victoria Honeywill, as its Employee of the Year 2019/20, recognising her outstanding contribution to the Hotel’s reception team, and her unrivalled dedication to go above and beyond for the Hotel and its guests. Always keen to recognise and reward the hard work of employees, Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa’s Chief Executive, Noel Byrne, has awarded Victoria a dream getaway to a European city of her choice.

Victoria, who is a receptionist at the Hotel, will be able to select a destination for herself and a guest, with the prize including flights and accommodation, all booked and organised by the team at Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa, to say thank you for her outstanding contribution.

The Hotel, which is frequently recognised for its exceptional service, implemented the Employee of the Month scheme as an opportunity to reward staff members for extraordinary levels of dedication and enthusiasm for their work, outstanding customer service skills, and clear demonstrations of teamwork. Through the initiative, each month, Heads of Departments and Managers at Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa are able to nominate their colleagues who have stood out and, at the end of the 12 months, the Hotel’s senior management team reviews all twelve winners and votes for the most commendable Employee of the Year, as well as two runners up.

This year’s runners up were Keeley Schoberl, Spa Head Receptionist, and Linda Muller, who works in the Hotel’s Housekeeping team. Both received a bespoke trophy and a bottle of Champagne for their contributions over the year.

Noel Byrne, Chief Executive, Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa, comments: “We are so lucky to have such a fantastic team here at Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa, every member of the team makes a valuable contribution in their own way, and this is something we’re extremely proud of. That said, this does make the decision of Employee of the Year extremely difficult! We’d like to wish a huge congratulations to Victoria, she is a valued member of our reception team, and continuously pushes herself to provide the best experience for our guests.”

Further highlighting the dedication of the Hotel’s team, Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa has recently been named Hotel of the Year in the Norfolk & Suffolk Tourism Awards; the accolade recognised the Hotel’s impeccable performance across the board in delivering the ultimate guest experience. During the judging stages, staff at the Hotel welcomed the esteemed judging panel to showcase the warm welcome and luxurious experience every guest of the Hotel enjoys. 


News archive