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Convention Bureau celebrates 10th birthday

16th February 2011

Categories: Convention Bureau News

NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau is bringing the party to International Confex, as the team celebrates the Bureau’s 10th anniversary.

The distinctive Angel of the North stand will return to Earls Court next month, setting the scene for magic tricks, party games, birthday cake and more. Joining the celebrations are eight stand partners representing venues from across North East England, all poised to help event planners and conference organisers write the next chapter in the destination’s story. 

The Convention Bureau’s birthday celebrations will break into full swing in the afternoon with a drinks reception of pink fizz for clients looking to learn more about the facilities and venues on offer across the destination – popping the cork at 4pm on Tuesday and Wednesday, 3pm Thursday.

Jessica Roberts, head of business tourism at NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau, said: “We’re inviting the colleagues and clients who have taken part in the destination’s story to join us for our birthday party at Confex. We’re looking forward to catching up with old friends, and introducing new contacts to all the destination has to offer.”

The ‘twin cities’ of NewcastleGateshead have, in the last decade, built a reputation as one of the most surprising, creative and practical conference cities in England. Major infrastructure developments since 2001 have included the addition of major hotel brands such as Hilton, Hotel du Vin, and Jurys Inn; increasing bed stock by around 42% and ensuring conference planners have access to over 5,500 bedrooms.

A dramatic change in the destination’s ability to host large-scale conferences came with the opening of The Sage Gateshead in 2004. Designed by Sir Norman Foster, this world-class venue is an iconic landmark on Gateshead Quays and is a spectacular setting for meetings and events. With a stunning auditorium for over 1600 delegates, The Sage Gateshead has helped position NewcastleGateshead as one of the most sought after conference destinations in the UK, hosting events as diverse as the British Council for Shopping Centres and the International Society for the Performing Arts.

The Sage Gateshead will be joining the Convention Bureau at International Confex alongside seven other stand partners, including; city development company, 1NG, who are developing proposals for an International Conference and Exhibition Centre on Gateshead Quays. 1NG will be displaying plans for the site throughout Confex and are keen to receive feedback from visitors.  

Meet in Durham will be on hand to talk about a brand new website dedicated to conferencing and events in the county; Newcastle University and the Convention Bureau’s newest academic member, The University of Sunderland; five-star country house hotel, spa and golf resort, Rockliffe Hall; the Art Deco Newcastle Civic Centre and Hilton Newcastle Gateshead. 

Follow the action live from stand B220 via Twitter @NG_Conferences, International Confex takes place at Earls Court, London 01-03 March 2011.
 
To mark the Convention Bureau’s 10th Birthday and the dramatic destination development that has taken place in the last decade, here are ten things to look forward to in 2011.

1. BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art welcomes the Turner Prize in 2011, the first non-Tate venue outside of London to host the prestigious contemporary art event
2. Funding applications for a proposed International Conference and Exhibition Centre on Gateshead Quays have been submitted to the Regional Growth Fund, outcomes from the first stage are expected in April
3.  The Sage Gateshead will once again welcome over 1000 delegates for the National Union of Students annual conference in 2011, returning after a successful event in 2010
4. Jurys Inn will open its second hotel in NewcastleGateshead adding an additional 200 bedrooms with a great riverside location
5. A year of significant medical sector conferences with major conferences for the British Association of Sexual Health & HIV, the College of Emergency Medicine and the European Society for Paediatric Research all taking place
6. More new accommodation brands for NewcastleGateshead including the UK’s first Sandman Signature hotel, Sleeperz and Hotel Indigo, plus the opening of Euro Hostel Newcastle, providing top quality,  budget accommodation for delegates
7. A newly designed Delegate Welcome Pack including a specially developed Discover Pass packed with discounts and offers to make the most of NewcastleGateshead
8. The NewcastleGateshead Bridges Festival will have its pilot events, celebrating the life blood of the city, the River Tyne, and the famous seven bridges, which stitch Newcastle and Gateshead  together
9. Major refurbishments of some of the area’s top venues from rural gems Slaley Hall and Close House Hotel to city venues including The CastleGate and Holiday Inn Newcastle Jesmond
10. The next edition of the award winning NewcastleGateshead Conference Guide, which will be available from late 2011
ENDS

Media Enquiries
Shelley Staines, Media and PR Manager – Destination & Business, NewcastleGateshead Initiative
 T: 0191 440 5739 M: 07717 631 109 E: shelley.staines@ngi.org.uk 

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