The ICCA UK & Ireland Chapter is a member organisation covering every area of conference management – from venues and convention bureaux, to hotels, airlines and PCOs.
As proud members of ICCA, NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau successfully bid to bring the annual Winter Debate to the destination and organised the event to showcase the best of the twin-cities.
This year’s event titled ‘The Business of Getting Business’ took place 10-11 February 2014 at Sage Gateshead, on the NewcastleGateshead Quayside. The event offered tips for destinations, venues and hotels on compliance and insight into how rules on a global level are interpreted at a local level. The sessions also explored how associations can attract younger generations to their event, along with how businesses can meet client expectations in the current climate.
The event was for anyone in the industry interested in compliance, ambassador programmes and bidding for events and offers practical, best practice tips from across the industry.
In the morning before the conference sessions began, delegates had the opportunity to familiarise themselves with the destination by joining a walking tour of NewcastleGateshead led by a local Blue Badge Guide. This walking tour took in all of the key sights and attractions including Centre for Life, Discovery Museum, Theatre Royal and Tyneside Cinema.
The first day was followed by a drinks reception at a unique and historic setting – Newcastle Castle’s Castle Keep. This venue is one of the county’s finest surviving examples of a Norman castle keep, having been built between 1168 and 1178 by Henry II, and offers spectacular views over the cityscape from its roof.
Dinner was held in the luxurious Vermont Hotel, located adjacent to the Castle Keep. This was accompanied by music from a local band, playing traditional and contemporary Geordie songs – from Blaydon Races to Fog on the Tyne!
Kate Timperley, Secretariat of the ICCA UK & Ireland Chapter, said: “From my perspective, the ICCA UK & Ireland Winter Debate in NewcastleGateshead was a great success. Sage Gateshead was a perfect venue for the event and our delegates enjoyed the spectacular views of the cityscape from the catering area. The venue staff could not have been more helpful pre and during the event and helped everything to run very smoothly. The team at NewcastleGateshead Initiative helped pull the event together, including the fantastic social programme, and made everyone feel very welcome in NewcastleGateshead.”