Mancunian meetings way

The North West conference powerhouse continues to invest in itself

Following our focus on the Liverpool City Region in last month’s CN, we major on that other meetings industry North West giant, Manchester, this time. A big 2016 for conferencing showed just why the city is a main motor of the Northern Powerhouse project.

The 2016 Conference Value & Volume study showed the number and value of events were rising, although it also found that delegate numbers were dropping.

Nevertheless, the value of the conference and business events sector to Greater Manchester was put at £810m, a figure generated through hosting 4.5m delegates and servicing 7.4m delegate days.

The study also showed that the average value of a day delegate (per trip) was £79, while the average value of a staying delegate was £318 (per trip).

The business and conference events sector supports 21,900 direct jobs within Greater Manchester and 40,100 jobs to the UK.

Five key trends also emerged from the study since the previous survey in 2013, namely:

• A 14% growth in the number of events booked with Greater Manchester venues.

• A 9% growth in the economic impact generated by delegates staying in the ‘wider destination’.

• Growth in the value of business coming from the northwest and overseas (4% and 11% respectively).

• Growth in non-corporate business, from representing 43% of the sector in 2013, to 48% in 2015. Non-corporate business includes; national association, international association and the not-for-profit sector.

• 9% decrease in the number of delegates attending a conference and business event in Greater Manchester, despite an increased number of bookings.

The September to November quarter remains the busiest three-month period for venues hosting such business.

Appliance of Science

The EuroScience Open Forum was a momentous event for Manchester in July 2016. Europe’s largest interdisciplinary science meeting brought together 3,000 leading policy makers, journalists and educators from 90 countries to the city to discuss breakthroughs in science.

This has done substantial work to further the ‘great minds meet in Manchester’ message, and cement Manchester as a global city of science.

Manchester hopes to capitalise on this scientific meetings success by continuing to target high-profile science conferences, particularly in the life science, creative and digital, and advanced materials sectors.

Next year the Diabetes UK Professional Conference is expected to bring 3,000 delegates and an economic impact of £5.8m, closely followed by Informatics for Health         2017 in April, which will see 1,000 delegates arriving in Manchester with an economic impact of £3m.

Manchester has also won the 8th Children’s Global Media Summit, expected to welcome over 1,500 delegates from around the globe to Manchester in December 2017 with an impact of £3m. It’ll be a great opportunity to celebrate the city’s thriving creative and media sector.

Martin Fullard


Martin Fullard

Martin Fullard: journalist, presenter, producer. Martin is the Deputy Editor at Conference News and Conference & Meetings World magazines. He leads the digital channels on Mash Media’s Conference Division as well as heading up Mash TV. He is formerly a web editor at a national newspaper in the Middle East and motoring journalist.

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