At the UK industry association AEV's conference on 30 November 2022, delegates gathered at the Harrogate Convention Centre for the day's proceedings following an icebreaker event at The Cold Bath Brewing Co.
The day began with a short rundown of the day's schedule from conference 'Emcee' Samme Allen, followed by motivational speaker Marcus Child.
Child’s keynote, 'The Power of People', explained motivation, the science behind thoughts of success and achievement, and the importance of inspiration.
The morning session explored diversity, equality and inclusion, the political landscape for events, and concluded with a wide-ranging 'fireside chat' between Kate Nicholls OBE, chief executive of UK Hospitality, and Shaun Hinds, chief executive of Manchester Central and AEV Chair.
The afternoon delivered a session on the future of venues from Ben Heath, principal at Grimshaw.
The sustainability panel was chaired by Anna Abdelnoor, CEO of isla, featuring three Net-Zero spokespeople from member venues: Kate Vandenburg, Business Design Centre; Louise Day, Manchester Central; and Stephane Bazire, Silverstone Circuits.
Chris Holt MBE, chief executive of CHC Global (the AEV's partner in risk management) – gave a sobering assessment of the current environment of risk and how it is changing, with the venue perspective in mind.
Finally, Max Fellows delivered the closing keynote address, showing why and how to make a success of personal branding.
AEV director, Rachel Parker, said, "The power of people was evident in the room today, and I hope that every delegate and member venue will have found something to inspire them, to take back to their workplace and in their own personal development.”
There were several students among the delegates, including Lydia Shires, International Events Management student at The University of Huddersfield, who commented, "It was fascinating to hear from industry experts about sustainability and diversity within events.
“I am now feeling even more motivated to graduate from university and continue working towards my career goals,"
Carlo Zoccali, venue director of Farnborough International, added, "[I am] lucky enough to be at the AEV Conference at Harrogate Convention Centre and welcome Marcus Child with his keynote topic 'The Power of People' and it was so powerful to listen and learn."