FROM THE CHAIR
Well, the name of this
publication says it all. A
day doesn’t pass without
Despite the slump in sterling and pessimistic predictions, the
new ideas being devised
to live up to the
events industry reports a positive outlook
challenges posed in the
current economic climate.
These truly are as
challenging as they are eventful times.
Every day, while businesses across the
country, and throughout our membership,
are taking steps to survive, hope is rather
dampened by further gloomy news.
Training comes to mind at such times.
Many people view training costs and time
away from the workplace as steps to be
deferred to another time which offers a
better economic climate. But surely it is of
utmost importance, in such eventful
times, to realise every single asset of each
member of staff to its full potential.
Training potentially brings a keener
perception to all day-to-day activities and
projects. It can refine a competitive edge
in difficult times. Through membership of
ACE, several training programmes are on
offer and I do hope that this service will be The headlines are all too familiar - sterling has French, who launched her company 20 years
of great benefit to you all. Now is the time hit rock bottom, high street names are going ago. “We provide speakers for a lot of awards
to plan for the future. bust and banks are in big trouble. While the ceremonies and this sector works well for us.
In this, our second issue, I am very sad to outlook is challenging, many businesses are Speakers are key to an event and some rely on
report the death of Geoffrey Gray-Forton, keeping purposefully positive. the speaker to attract delegates.”
the founder of ACE International, who will Jane French, director of The Right Address, French says there are cutbacks and
be missed by many. We pay tribute to organises motivational speakers, presenters companies are tightening their belts by being
Geoffrey and his career on page seven. and cabaret for the corporate market, including selective.
Best wishes economists and specialists in sales and “Last year clients were willing to spend
Michael Sharp business. £5,000 on a speaker but now they have a
ACE Chairman and Managing Director “Thankfully we have a lot on the go. There is smaller budget. It’s just a case of tightening up.
Central Hall Westminster still an industry expectation to host a certain Events are happening and they can still be
amount of events year in and year out,” says CONTINUED ON PAGE 2
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www.aceinternational.org EVENTFUL TIMES MARCH 2009
INDUSTRY NEWS REGIONAL FOCUS
CONTINUED FROM PAGE
good, even on a smaller scale.”
The trend is for making strategic
cuts. “Some companies are
choosing to host the event in their
Chelsea Old Town Hall in London.
His organisation is different to
many other companies working in
this sector as the facilities are
owned by the Royal Borough of
ACE has a new website offering members
own offices and that is not a Kensington and Chelsea and have
problem,” says French. The slump historically been used mainly to even more marketing and communication What you need to know to be in-the-know
in sterling is also being taken into serve the needs of the council and tools. Eventful Times considers what makes a
account. “Larger corporations, its associates. “First and foremost . Where is Shakespeare Shakespeare’s birthplace
with offices across Europe, may the venues have been available to
website work? Country?
choose to host their event in internal clients including a range ACE members may already be Shakespeare Country lies in the
London to get more value for of government-related bodies, enjoying the organisation’s new West Midlands region, at the
money.” education and charitable website. The site has been updated centre of England and the heart
One recent trend spotted by institutions. My background is in and carefully constructed to offer of the country.
French is the popularity of futurist the commercial sector and my ACE members an accessible and 2. What is Shakespeare
and economist speakers and appointment here is to grow the effective marketing and Country?
motivational experts. “In these commercial side of the business communication tool. Shakespeare Country is the
turbulent times companies are and make the venues available for Stuart Forrester, managing official destination marketing
trying to keep morale up in the outside hire.” director of The Forrester organisation for the South
face of such media gloom. So “We have not had much Corporation, a strategic marketing Warwickshire area with over
much comes down to interest from potential overseas and communication company 300 members including hotels,
confidence.” clients but then we have not based in Huntingdon, is the brains attractions, restaurants,
Janet Killilea, of JK Event actively pursued them. When behind the new site. conference venues and retail
Management, based in Cheshire, positioning ourselves as a “At the core of the site is a new The new ACE website outlets.
is looking ahead. “Like everyone, I commercial business, we will be content management system and . What does the Shakespeare
have been waiting for the decline looking to attract business from this is key,” says Stuart. “ACE and its websites offer a continuous Country Conference Bureau
but there is still work out there,” that market. While predictions members can add and update presence that becomes the back- do?
she says. Killilea organises many show a continuation of the content and directory details as bone of a communication The Bureau offers a dedicated
events for the public sector, downturn in the economy for the they need to. The system is intuitive strategy.” sales team armed with local
among others, from evening next year, we will use this time to and easy for people to pick up.” Colin Pauley, Global Business knowledge and the contacts to
seminars for 30-40 people to upgrade our facilities and There is a members’ directory, Development Director at help find a venue to suit all
three-day residential events for restructure ourselves to be able to calendar and events diary and an e- EventElephant, an expanding events. These services are
1,500 delegates, and she says service the internal market while commerce module which allows technology company offering an completely free of charge.
there are still “tenders coming left, increasing availability for outside new members to join online and online self-service product designed 4. Location, location, location…
right and centre”. hire. ACE to sell events and publications. to support a range of events, n London: Between 90
“I am keeping a positive outlook “I was working in the Following registration, members acknowledges the importance of minutes to two hours’ drive
but a level head,” says Killilea. “A
lot comes down to networking
commercial sector in the early
1990s, during the last economic
have direct access to their directory
entries and can interact fully with
an effective website for business:
“Our website not only tells people
from central London (100
SHAKESPEARE COUNTRY FACTS
and word-of-mouth. I rarely bloodbath, as a consultant the site. what our product does but it also n Birmingham International n 82% of the UK’s business HQs n The NEC (30 minutes drive with an expected 25,000
advertise apart from through offering services to the exhibition “News is central to the site and shows what sort of people we are. Airport and NEC: 30-40 are within 150 miles of from Shakespeare Country) is delegates
ACE.” industry. When the upturn came it there are lots of opportunities for We see ourselves as very interactive minutes drive (20 miles) Shakespeare Country the busiest convention and Information: To contact
Companies are looking at all was very rapid and many members’ news as well as what is and as having lots of touch points n Direct train routes from n Over 2,300 overseas events business in the UK Shakespeare Country
areas to identify any potential organisations found themselves happening in the industry and so, for us, video is a good way of London Marylebone to companies from 40 different n Business meetings and Conference Bureau call 0844
growth areas for business. David wrong footed. We want to make breaking stories. From a day-to-day doing that. Warwick, Leamington Spa and countries have a business base events is the fastest growing 477 879 or visit www.
Scott is conference and events sure our organisation is ideally editorial perspective, the site is “There’s a generation of business Stratford-upon-Avon in the region sector of the tourism economy shakespeare-country.co.uk/
manager at Kensington positioned when the upturn constantly refreshed and current people who have grown up with n London Paddington to n Business tourism is worth n In June 2009 the 100th conference
Conference and Events Centre and comes this time round.” without requiring much web technology. They do all of their Moreton-in-the-Marsh and £6.9bn per annum to the World Rotary Club Convention Source: www.shakespeare-
maintenance,” says Stuart. prospecting and communication Evesham and London Euston to regional economy will be hosted in the region country.co.uk
Companies are trying to keep “A website has the ability to offer by email, the internet and websites. Birmingham International
morale up in the face of such 24/7 publicity and communication.
Given today’s economic climate,
It’s increasingly the core method of
interacting in business.”
media gloom. So much comes
down to confidence CREATING AN EFFECTIVE WEBSITE
n Get the basics right and keep and other sites provide A self service online product, that makes it simple for event
EVENTFUL TIMES IS PUBLISHED BY it simple
n Consider your customers and
statistics packages that make
understanding your visitors
organiser’s to manage their event attendees
what will benefit them easy SET UP a great looking multi-page event website
n Lose any gimmicks See the ACE website at www.
SEND OUT email invitations, updates and reminders
n Design for the present and aceinternational.org
Publisher: Gordon Lyster. Editor: Lisa Millard. the future Stuart Forrester can be SIGN UP online registrations and credit card payments
Deputy Editor: Alan Seeley. Production Manager: Phil Long. n Keeps cost down to allow contacted at www. CREATE TICKETS for a variety of types and prices
Business Development Manager: Rob McGowan. further development such as theforrestercorporation.com
Contact Information: Phone +44 0207 9 9076 site structure, design and on 0845 2997484. CUSTOMISE your website with banners and photos
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org and professional copy-writing Source: The Forrester TRACK sales and attendee figures and live reports
Website: www.eventsandpublishing.com n Evaluate your site. Google Corporation www.eventelephant.com/organisers email@example.com 0208 3348068 promo code ACE01
2 MARCH 2009 EVENTFUL TIMES www.aceinternational.org www.aceinternational.org EVENTFUL TIMES MARCH 2009
Shakespeare Country Venues SHAKESPEARE COUNTRY VENUES INCLUDE
Siân Thompson is Shakespeare Country conference sales executive. She tells
Eventful Times why the area has so much to offer event organisers
destination. We will work even April which will be the starting heritage and culture and is
more closely with our members to point for, we hope, a very perhaps best known for being the
promote this area and all it has to successful future. home of Britain’s greatest
offer. The Shakespeare Country playwright, William Shakespeare.
We started by re-launching a Destination Showcase will be held The area is home to charming
new visual identity as the on April 23 2009. As well as being market towns and some of
Shakespeare Country Conference St George’s Day, this date is England’s finest countryside. One Warwick Castle, at the centre of the historic town of Warwick, is The Heritage Motor Centre,just off junction 12 of the M40, offers an
Bureau, concentrating on the key especially significant to the area of Shakespeare Country’s best Britain’s greatest Mediaeval experience. The Coach House provides a ultra-modern setting in 65 acres of grounds, encompassing a
elements that make this area so for being William Shakespeare’s kept secrets is the mix it offers to rustic setting for conferences for up to 70 people theatre style and 80 purpose-built conference centre with capacity for up to 600
successful – particularly the birthday. The showcase will offer the event organiser. Where else for a banquet, while the Great Hall and State Dining Room are ideal delegates, plus a roof-top Kestrel suite for up to 280 delegates, a Land
central location and conference and event organisers can you hold a dinner in a for gala dinners and lavish receptions. The castle’s 60 acres are perfect Rover 4x4 off-road experience, go kart track as well as the motor
quintessentially English the perfect opportunity to view Mediaeval Castle, take your for team building activities. Delegates can learn combat skills at museum itself which houses some of Britain’s finest examples of
surroundings. We have already the destination and experience delegates to a performance by the Knight School or take part in a live falconry display. motoring design and technology.
launched a new-look website, how it could benefit their future world-renowned Royal
which complements our award- events. Beginning with a Shakespeare Company or host a Information: For more information about the Shakespeare Country Destination Showcase, and to apply to attend the event,
winning consumer website, and a networking exhibition at a local candlelit drinks reception in the please email Siân Thompson at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0844 477 8379.
brand new conference and hotel, the day will include a birthplace of William
Shakespeare Country is quite a business guide will follow shortly. celebratory birthday lunch at a Shakespeare?
well-kept secret from the business The Shakespeare Country breathtaking stately home One of Shakespeare Country’s on delegate facilities and meeting- conference facilities, Shakespeare superb shopping and a variety of delegates the chance to leave the
events sector and often over- Conference Bureau will be followed by tours of the area and main strengths as a meeting and room provision. Despite being a Country also offers many ideas to bars, restaurants and bistros. The office far behind and focus on the
shadowed by its larger welcoming some very exciting further venues in the afternoon. conference destination is the heritage destination, facilities complement an event. Guided Cotswolds, just south of Stratford- task at hand. The Cotswolds are
neighbouring destinations. This is events to the area in 2009 and The day will conclude with a diversity of its hotels. Over the last offer high-speed Wi-Fi internet tours of the area with a Blue upon-Avon, with excellent links to home to some truly exclusive
all set to change in 2009 as our 2010 which will serve to show its traditional afternoon tea and a few years Shakespeare Country access, state of the art Badge Tourist Guide are a very the M5, provides the perfect venues offering luxurious
organisation takes steps to make versatility as a destination. One of garden party at our host hotel and has seen more than £30m presentation equipment and popular choice. Delegates can also destination for a team building surroundings and fine dining ideal
sure Shakespeare Country is put our main focuses will be the lots of extra surprises! invested in local hotels and almost naturally lit conference rooms. enjoy the buzz of Royal event as the rural surroundings for corporate entertaining or
firmly on the map as a key events Destination Showcase event in Shakespeare Country is rich in all of this money has been spent As well as its excellent Leamington Spa which boasts and lack of distractions give executive board meetings.
0870 160 7930
ExplorE thE shops, bars, rEstaurants
and thE arts of shakEspEarE Country
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Wherever you are doing a staff incentive or a major global finding, group fares and ticketing, latest destinations, venues and
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4 MARCH 2009 EVENTFUL TIMES www.aceinternational.org www.aceinternational.org EVENTFUL TIMES MARCH 2009
QA ACE NEWS
SPOTLIGHT ON... ACE REMEMBERS EVENTS DIARY
ACE AND VENTURA
Eventful Times pays tribute to
several courses and one of our liquidity is always important. We
most popular courses offers always look for best value and
financial awareness for PAs and exceptional customer service. March 9:
Head of Department of the
Q: What are the core Geoffrey Gray-Forton, 90-2008 Risk Assessment in the
Conference and Event
Chartered Institute of Management
Q: What size are the events you components of a successful Joy Montmorency, former Executive Chairman of ACE, remembers Industry
organise and what venues do event/seminar? Venue: Central London
Accountants (CIMA) Courses and you use? The key components are: Geoffrey Gray-Forton
A: Our events range from five to n Excellent organisation and for Conferences and Events, he On behalf of all the members March
Conferences based in central London. 200 and we use a wide range of preparation was instrumental in bringing of the Association, we send Time Management
venues throughout the UK and n Good support from all suppliers together those who worked in the deepest condolences to Venue: Central London
Q: What does your job involve? edge techniques with a Europe. Some are large n Keen eye for detail conference industry, encouraging Geoffrey’s widow, Barbara (nee
A:I am responsible for 19 staff and commercial focus. conference venues and others are n Positive and can-do attitude to members in their various fields to Cox) who was a member of ACE April 0
front-of-house including training centres or hotels. challenges adhere to a code of practice and since early days, worked with Presentation Skills and
reception, hospitality, staff Q: What range of events do you high professional standards. Geoffrey, and is Managing Training Objectives
restaurant and meeting rooms. I organise for CIMA and what does Q: How many events do you Q: What are the benefits of being Geoffrey was much in demand Director and Company Venue: Central London
work with the courses and this involve? organise each year and for how part of ACE? throughout the world. He has Secretary of Meetings Contact: J Thompson at the
conferences team to deliver a A: We organise a range of many people? A: Being able to network with like- been the recipient of many awards World. Barbara has been an ACE office on: 01480 457594
programme of events which Continuing Professional A: In total we organise 500 events minded professionals and have It is with great sadness that we from various countries for his unceasing tower of strength to or email ace@
create a commercial return for Development (CPD) courses for for about 10,000 delegates. Some the opportunity to visit new and report the death of Geoffrey services. His various afflictions did Geoffrey over these last few aceinternational.org for
CIMA our qualified members and other of these events are bite-size interesting venues. Gray-Forton (GGF) on not stop him from writing and his years. further details and pricing.
accountants and courses for non- briefings, one-and-a-half-hour December 29 2008. He had books, available in digital form, are The funeral was held on
Q: What is CIMA? accountants to become more events which are proving very been ill for some years and died a great source of information. Tuesday January 13 at TRADE FAIRS
A: CIMA is the most relevant financially aware. Our main popular. Janice Howard, Head of CIMA peacefully at home. Almost the last thing he did was Bournemouth Crematorium May
international accountancy product is CIMA Mastercourses Courses and Conferences, 26 Geoffrey was the founder of to write an article for the first issue and attended by family, friends The Academic Venue Show,
qualification for business. which offers one, two and three Q: What are the key components Chapter Street, London SWP ACE and Chairman of Meetings of this ACE newsletter, Eventful and colleagues. I attended, Emirates Stadium, London
Chartered Management days, face-to-face training on you look for when selecting a 4NP World (1969) Associates. As the Times. Geoffrey was a ceaseless representing ACE and having Register free at www.
Accountants are financially topics including lean finance and supplier, venue and activity? Direct T +44(0)20 8849 224 and founder of The Association of worker, always willing to give known Geoffrey for 30 years, to academicvenueshow.co.uk
qualified business leaders who decision-based reporting. For non- A: When selecting a supplier, a email@example.com. Conference Executives in 1971, advice and to listen and help ACE pay tribute to Geoffrey on
create value by applying leading financial customers we have background check on their See www.cimaglobal.com later to become the Association members and others. behalf of ACE. May 26-28
IMEX 09, Frankfurt Messe
FOCUS ON... NEW MEMBERS
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6 MARCH 2009 EVENTFUL TIMES www.aceinternational.org www.aceinternational.org EVENTFUL TIMES MARCH 2009 7
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8 MARCH 2009 EVENTFUL TIMES www.aceinternational.org