Sheffield Convention Bureau has issued a city-wide call for conference ambassadors to boost its 200-strong group.
The bureau claims its Conference Ambassador Programme has secured conferences and events in the city worth over £3m to the economy since the initiative was established three years ago.
The scheme, jointly funded by Sheffield City Council and Welcome to Yorkshire, aims to help grow business tourism within the city by recruiting leading business professionals and academics who can help identify and attract more conferences and events.
Manager of the programme Gemma Bradshaw believes there is room for more organisations and individuals to get engaged in the initiative.
The city’s strategy for business tourism is to build on the two million business delegates who currently come to the city each year. The bureau says its research shows that 40 per cent of delegates return as leisure visitors.
Conferences secured through the programme include the annual Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship Conference, expected to draw 400 delegates to the city later in the year, and the European Society of Glass Technology Conference which will take place in 2016.
The city’s two universities are key drivers of the programme, alongside consultants and surgeons at Sheffield’s hospitals.
Shelagh Cowley, Training, Marketing and Events Coordinator for the Polymer Centre at the University of Sheffield became a Conference Ambassador two years ago and tapped into the programme’s help network while organising the Project Sunshine Shine International Conference 2011. The conference is a showcase event for the University of Sheffield and addresses the science behind food and energy sustainability. Sheffield City Hall will host the event in September and Cowley expects to attract 300 delegates.
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