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05/2021

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The Meetings Show has appointed Erica Oghoghorie as conference and content manager to oversee the event’s comprehensive education programme.

Erica will be using her five years multi-sector content production experience gained from working with both Haymarket Media Group and Efferent, to compile an inspiring programme when the world’s meetings and events professionals come together from 30 September to 1 October at London’s ExCeL.

Erica Oghoghorie said: “I’m looking forward to building on the success of The Meetings Show, bringing fresh perspectives, stimulating in-person and virtual expert-led content that will support the industry’s road to recovery.”

The education programme is always an invaluable part of the show’s visitor’s experience, so in addition to bringing her own ideas, Erica is also keen to hear from anyone who has a burning desire to share their expertise.

She added: “If someone’s an innovator and specialises in driving change or has their finger on the pulse and can expertly predict future trends or impart enthusing insight, I’d love to hear from them. As the show is taking a hybrid format, there’s opportunities to present either live at ExCeL, or through our virtual platform that’s going to ensure those unable to attend can still interact and network with exhibitors while benefiting from the rousing content.”

Those looking to participate in the education programme, should provide a proposed title and, in no more than 250 words, a brief synopsis of what delegates will discover by attending their proposed talk. The proposal should also include details of how the talk or informative session will be delivered.

To submit a proposal, please complete the application form online here www.themeetingsshow.com/call-for-papers by 31 May.

Successful applicants may also be offered the chance to speak on a panel debate, providing further opportunity to showcase their industry knowledge.

For more information about The Meetings Show, visit www.themeetingsshow.com.

Warwick Conferences to host international judo event

Warwick Conferences has once again shown its credentials of hosting world-class sporting events after it was announced as the host venue for the prestigious IBSA Visually Impaired Judo Grand Prix, ahead of the 2021 Paralympics.

Around 400 athletes, coaches and professionals will be attending the event, which is being run by British Judo and takes place between 19 and 20 June. The competition will be held at the multi-million-pound Sport and Wellness Hub, while all participants will be using the on-site accommodation throughout the weekend.

Adhering to strict Government guidelines, all of the spaces available at Warwick Conferences have had stringent safety measures put in place, with sanitation stations placed throughout the venue.

Tailored catering options will also be pre-planned by the Warwick Conferences team, to allow delegates to enjoy high-quality meals that fit their dietary requirements while they are competing. 

With participants travelling from around 20 different countries, the Warwick Conferences team is working closely with the West Midlands and Warwickshire public health authorities to ensure safe travel of the athletes and running of the event. As an elite classified sporting event, all athletes in attendance will also carry out regular Covid-19 tests.

For added assistance, maps of the venue and floor plans with outlined routes that will be taken during the weekend will be provided to the team leaders, enabling them to ensure all athletes feel comfortable with the layout of the venue ahead of visiting. 

Ben Pollard, Head of Marketing for British Judo, said: “When searching for a venue we were blown away by the fantastic facilities on offer at Warwick Conferences. It made it an obvious choice for the Visually Impaired Grand Prix in June, especially given the state-of-the-art sports arena. It was also excellent to be reassured of the stringent safety measures in place that will keep delegates safe as the wellbeing of our athletes and coaches is vital. It’s set to be a very exciting event, with Paralympic places still very much up for grabs so we are really looking forward to it.”

Paul Bartlett, Warwick Conferences Director, said: “It’s an honour to have been selected as the venue to host this prominent competition and the athletes here at Warwick Conferences during their stay. We can’t wait to welcome everyone and ensure the event runs smoothly with our team of event organisers on hand to help.”

The international event is the first of many world-class competitions being jointly hosted by University of Warwick and Warwick Conferences. In 2022, athletes competing in the Commonwealth Games will be staying at the venue, taking advantage of the facilities.

For more information, please visit www.warwickconferences.com.

NAEC Stoneleigh has been announced as the new venue for the underwater exhibition Go Diving.

The premier event in the UK diving calendar will take place at the venue on 4-6 March 2022.

The Go Diving Show is an exciting and interactive, trade and consumer, scuba diving exhibition, which allows seasoned divers, novice open water divers and even those interested in taking their first fin-steps into the sport, the opportunity to get hand’s-on.

Showcasing new equipment from the major brands, visitors can take part in skills workshops, attend keynote presentations, venture beneath the sea on virtual reality dives, or just socialise with fellow divers in a relaxed and friendly environment.

Hosted for the third year in succession by adventurer and technical diver Andy Torbet, the 2022 show will see the return of headline speaker Steve Backshall, along with the likes of Monty Halls, Alex Mustard and a whole host of specialists in the arenas of technical diving, dive training and underwater photography.

Lynn Gardener, Account Director at NAEC Stoneleigh, said: “It is always exciting when we get to host an exhibition for the first time and Go Diving was the perfect fit, our halls can easily offer the space the event requires for their interactive displays and pools, where visitors can have a go at diving themselves.”

To find out more information about NAEC Stoneleigh, visit www.naecstoneleigh.co.uk or search for NAEC Stoneleigh on social media.

To find out more about Go Diving 2022, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/naec-stoneleigh/go-diving-show-2022/719142368926947/

Wyboston Lakes Resort has earned 45th place in the UK’s Top 100 Best Companies to Work For list 2021.

In the Top 75 Best Companies to Work for in the East of England, Wyboston Lakes Resort was ranked 21st and also at 10th in Leisure & Hospitality’s 20 Best Companies to Work For.

The conference, training and leisure venue also achieved its highest Best Companies Index (BCI) score of 753.7, based on a scale of 1 to 1000.

These achievements are in addition to securing Best Companies’ 3-star accreditation for the second time, based on employee feedback, which means the venue is considered a ‘world class’ employer in terms of employee engagement.

Managing Director Steve Jones said: “We are thrilled to be in the top 50 companies this year. This is a proud moment for us, particularly after such a challenging year. This accolade is testament to the people and the culture we maintain at Wyboston Lakes Resort. With business picking up substantially, this will be valuable for the future success and growth of our business.”

The 380-acre leisure and business resort employs more than 200 people across two modern conference venues, a four-star hotel, spa, 18-hole golf course and extensive serviced offices.

Accolades from Best Companies are regarded among the UK’s most comprehensive and coveted, with a rigorous process determining the merits of organisations from all industries, by assessing the methods in which they encourage, motivate, and engage with their employees.

The list is compiled using scores (on a scale of 1 to 1000) from employees’ responses to questions within the Best Companies survey on a range of factors including leadership, pay and work-life balance. Ratings are then determined from that score, ranging from ‘One to Watch’ to one star acknowledged as ‘very good’, two stars as ‘outstanding’ and three stars as ‘world class’.  

For more information, please visit https://www.wybostonlakes.co.uk

“There is strong evidence that the confidence of event planners has been given a massive boost by the Prime Minister’s speech last Monday as we look at the surge of booking confirmations and new bookings,” says Adam Simpson, Director of Marketing and US Sales at etc.venues.

“In just three days after the speech provisional bookings worth more than £1m were confirmed from the many enquiries we took since the roadmap was announced. That is a 500 per cent increase on last week and supports the hypothesis that many businesses were waiting for this crucial date to be confirmed before committing themselves.”

Events confirmed range from corporate conferences and AGMs to association meetings and government departmental events. etc.venues London properties have seen the biggest increase in bookings and enquiries compared to its Manchester and Birmingham venues relative to their averages.

“It is apparent that companies are looking to increase employee or member engagement with the events planned. Public sector events are bringing together whole departments that have been apart for over a year. Corporates are looking to bring senior managers and partners together to plan and strategise. Associations are aiming to gather their members to network and share industry updates at face-to-face annual events.”

Adam continues, “The other common factor we are seeing in the events is the focus on talent development, on-boarding and recruitment which points towards signs of growth. We should bear in mind that, although the hospitality industry has struggled during this pandemic, many sectors have thrived. Tech, consultancy, healthcare and pharmaceutical have had record breaking years and are looking to capitalise on this by growing employee numbers.

“It’s not just the total value of these events that is very encouraging, the number of events being confirmed has also been increasing significantly.”

 

Spike in bookings for next 3 months

Adam adds “What is more promising in the figures is a major spike in enquiries and bookings for short lead meetings and events – taking place in the next 3 months. Enquiries last week doubled compared with the previous week.

“These bookings are largely from new customers and SMEs rather than large enterprise companies. Judging by the event titles these clients are seizing the opportunity to meet customers and are selecting our venues for their central location and safe and secure environment.

“One trend we are watching closely is that of online bookings. Last week alone our online booking tool, which offers live availability, handled a number of new bookings that confirmed and paid online for the coming weeks.

“Overall, the bookings are nearly all for live only meetings and events, but many bookers are at the same time asking about and being reassured by our hybrid event capabilities and experience. They are interested in it as Plan B in case there is an unexpected need to change from live-only.

“We’re all set and ready for everyone with our safety protocols in place as we have been open for essential events – and it will be inspiring for all of us to welcome back hundreds of people to our venues.”

www.etcvenues.co.uk

HBAA has relaunched its ‘Meet Safe, Meet Smart’ (#MSMS) campaign with a supporting member action group to install consumer confidence to kick-start the meetings and events sector.

It will again encourage planners to have the confidence to book and organise meetings and encourage delegates to attend meetings in a safe environment.

To build confidence, the ‘Meet Safe, Meet Smart’ campaign will showcase the safety features of meetings with hotels and venues having updated their protocols to be Covid secure. It will also highlight the flexibility of contractual terms and conditions at all venues involved.

The campaign aims to provide facts, drive confidence and highlight that booking these venues offers delegates tangible assurances.

Juliet Price, Consultant Executive Director HBAA, said: “It is clear that there is still a lack of confidence among event planners wanting to commit to future live meetings and events. This campaign is to provide assurances and outline how HBAA venue members provide safe and smart establishments to deliver experiences and ensure we continue on the road to recovery.

“‘Meet Safe, Meet Smart’ aims to deliver on both fronts and drive confidence while demonstrating why people want to meet – and should meet – shoulder to shoulder – in line with the prescribed measures.

“There are many reasons why meeting in person is absolutely essential, from productivity to creativity, to positive mental health. However, we completely appreciate and acknowledge that that we must follow the government guidelines which are subject to change.

“Our industry must continue to unite to build customer confidence in resuming booking and attending live business meetings and events.”

Michael Begley, CEO of venuedirectory.com commented; “17th May 2021 is a landmark day for the UK as a country as hospitality gets back into full swing. Meetings and Events are a vital part of our economy and meeting up with colleagues at business events can be a huge boost for mental wellbeing. The HBAA Meet Safe Meet Smart initiative is one that we can all get behind; safe venues to meet at with flexible terms and conditions - let's get meetings started.”

#HBAAMSMS #HBAAfuturefit #wecreateexperiences

www.hbaa.org.uk

 

Warwick Conferences has achieved the We’re Good to Go accreditation as it continues preparations to reopen on 17 May. Following the easing of restrictions, the venue is once again opening its indoor and outdoor facilities, welcoming back event organisers, delegates and staff. 

The accreditation demonstrates that the business is adhering to Government and Public Health Guidance. In line with this, stringent cleaning processes and safety measures, including clear signage and floor markings throughout each building, have been put in place to ensure delegates and attendees are comfortable and feel safe during their stay. The full range of award-winning spaces will be available to book, with the recently launched executive boardroom and outdoor space ready to hire. 

Paul Bartlett, Director of Warwick Conferences, commented: “The team at Warwick Conferences has been working diligently to ensure that delegates continue to receive the same high-quality experience as before lockdown. Rest assured, we have put measures in place to ensure the same fantastic experience is maintained while adhering to Government guidelines.

“With a choice between both indoor and outdoor spaces, organisers can create tailored events to suit their needs. We have a new flexible approach to our award-winning catering services, including a pre-packed grab-and-go offering as well as room service for those staying overnight.”

Picnics and BBQs can also be provided by Warwick Conferences’ vast outdoor spaces, such as the Woodland Retreat, which was launched to provide delegates a creative experience outside.

Event organisers can also make the most of the technical team on hand if running hybrid or virtual meetings. These services are ideal for those looking to book large-scale or international meetings. A live-streaming service, using the venues broadcasting studio, streams the event for all delegates to access.

Prospective visitors can take a virtual tour of Warwick Conferences’ facilities. For more information on its reopening procedures, please visit https://warwick.ac.uk/services/conferences/keepingyousafe.

As part of ongoing investment in the services most needed by clients, BMA House’s expert technicians have created a range of hybrid and digital event packages that reflect ongoing changes in the corporate and association meeting industry.  These upgrades will ensure BMA House’s place as a leading London hybrid venue.

BMA’s flagship space, the Great Hall, is currently undergoing refurbishment that includes a fully equipped Hybrid Virtual Studio. A bespoke, custom-build to fit the Great Hall, the Studio is one of a kind and includes a prominent 20x10 green screen, 4 x PTZ HD camera set-up, streaming PC, VMix 4k Pro Software, relay monitors and professional lighting.

Including options for webcasting, breakouts, speaker only conferences and exhibitor/sponsor packages, the offering reflects both the challenges presented by COVID-19 and the future needs of event organisers.

Highlights from the packages include

  • Webcasting – fully branded live streaming platform with up to 2,000 viewing hours of content. Created using professional cameras and sound suite managed by two technicians.
  • Fully Equipped TV Studio Layout including – Interview/chat style set up, sales or product launches, conferences/meetings, AGM’s etc. All with the ability to bring in remote guests to feature in the event.
  • Fully Virtual – Including a fully brandable Teams/Teams live solution and GotoWebinar platform
  • Dedicated technical support – taking the pressure off event organisers to ensure a smooth-running hybrid event from start to finish.
  • Breakout sessions – available direct from main sessions or via bespoke joining links.  Full presentation setup with Q&A and interaction for up to 250 delegates.
  • Exhibitor and Sponsor spotlights – interactive demonstrations, virtual pitches and scheduled Q&A sessions.  Run live or created in advance by professional film and edit teams.
  • Fully digital meetings – facilitated by BMA’s technical experts and capable of hosting virtual events for up to 2,000, this option takes away the hassle and challenges of running a digital event, allowing organisers to focus on the content. 

Home to the British Medical Association since 1925, the sustainable venue boasts 22 unique and versatile spaces for up to 320 (without social distancing), including 11 purpose-built meeting rooms, all fitted with cutting edge AV technology.

Sustainability is a way of life for the team at BMA House, adopting green initiatives is essential, not only for the venue but also for clients, suppliers and events. As part of an ongoing drive to ensure event spaces provide top of the range technology, BMA House will also guarantee this is carried out in the most sustainable way, keeping a delegate’s carbon footprint as low as possible. In essence, BMA House is delivering the perfect balance between sustainability and technology.

Digital and hybrid solutions offer a new take on the concept of sustainable events.  Digital only events have a far lower impact on the world as travel decreases. In addition, hybrid events allow event planners to market to a wider audience, bringing in more people both domestically and internationally for (relatively) little cost, helping to increase attendee numbers on the day and create an overall more engaging event.

Countrywide Hotels, one of leading hospitality companies, is proud to announce the expansion of its portfolio with the signing of what was the Hilton Warwick Hotel, now under new ownership as the M40 J15 Warwick Hotel. Following a rebrand the hotel will become the Delta Warwick Marriott Hotel later this year.

The 181 bedroom, M40 J15 Warwick Hotel situated just two miles from central Warwick is under the new management of Countrywide Hotels.

The hotel will continue to be in the heart of the Warwick business district offering accommodation and meeting space for local and national companies. With excellent road connections to the M42, M5 and M6 and just 20 minutes from Birmingham International Airport and The National Exhibition Centre. The hotel can cater for meeting and events up to 450 guests in its 19 flexible function suites.

A key focus for the hotel will be to engage with all aspects of the local community, providing the perfect location for family celebrations, local award and charity dinners as well as being the place for friends to come and meet for dinner and drinks.

Darren Patt, Managing Director, we are delighted with the acquisition of the M40 J15 Warwick Hotel, and the multi-million pound investment that will go into the refurbishment, development and repositioning of the hotel to a Delta by Marriott hotel. The first stages of refurbishment will start in June with the reception, lobby, restaurant, and bar along with the first phase of bedrooms, ready for both leisure and business guests to use as the reopening of hospitality continues throughout the next two months.

The hotel team, who have been retained and undergone training during this lockdown are on hand to help with any enquiries and look forward to welcoming you back to the hotel very soon.

www.m40j15warwickhotel.co.uk

With sustainable and responsible travel at the top of the agenda for many of their clients, Inntel are partnering with Trees4Travel to provide a solution which offers both carbon emission tracking and offsetting.

Inntel and Trees4Travel share the vision of a carbon neutral future for business travel and meetings. Trees4Travel offer comprehensive tracking alongside a tangible and simple offsetting solution by calculating how many trees need to be planted to offset the CO2 for any journey. Clients can choose just to track their emissions or to track and offset by purchasing trees to be planted.

As a result of the pandemic, the business travel and meetings carbon footprint for many businesses has reduced to zero. The results from a recent client survey show that many of Inntel’s clients are keeping the sustainability of business travel at the forefront of their minds whilst they take first steps towards recovery. Alongside adopting the Trees4Travel solution, there is also an appetite for fewer but longer trips and working with ‘green’ accredited hotels, venues and travel partners.

 

CEO, of Trees4Travel Nico Nicholas

“We are delighted to have Inntel join us as a trail blazer for the ‘sustainable business travel’ cause. Offering this service allows their clients to simply, tangibly and inexpensively offset their emissions, rewild the world and ultimately make better, more mindful decisions regarding their business travel strategy.”

 

Douglas O’Neill, CEO, Inntel

“We are excited to announce our partnership with Trees4Travel, this solution provides everything we set out to achieve and more. Sustainable travel is very close to my heart and this partnership is a significant step forward within our green strategy.

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