ACC Liverpool lands biggest event yet

Liverpool’s Arena & Convention Centre – the £146m project on the city’s King’s Waterfront set to open in January 2008 – announced its biggest event deal to date on the opening day of London’s Confex show this morning. The British Society of Rheumatology (BSR) has committed to hold three annual conferences at ACC Liverpool. “We’ve got other deals bubbling under but this is the biggest so far. It’s a huge event and we’re chuffed its a three-year deal,” said convention centre general manager Jacquie Rogers. BSR will hold conferences at the venue in 2008 (coinciding with Liverpool with becoming the European Capital of Culture), 2011 and 2014. With anticipated annual delegate numbers of 1,700, plus 250 exhibitors, the first four-day conference is expected to generate some £3.8m per event in terms of wider economic impact for the local regional economy. BSR’s head of education and events Julia Kermode said that its location on the waterfront, and the size of the venue helped clinch the deal. “Our exhibition keeps growing every year and the problem we’ve had in the past is that we book venues so far ahead, that by the time the year comes we’re too big for the venue,” she said. “We’re having to rule out some of the venues we really like because of our size, so it’s really nice to find a venue we’re confident can fit us in and in Liverpool we have the potential for it to keep growing.” On completion, the convention centre will feature a 1,350-capacity auditorium, 18 breakout rooms accommodating between 30 and 500 people and some 7,000sqm of exhibition space.

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