Discover Telford, the destination marketing brand representing the Telford and Shropshire region, announced at International Confex that the economic impact of business events held in the region has risen by 20% in three years to £150m in 2016.
During the three-year period to December 2016, the destination has seen an increase in events secured, with over 100 association and professional sector events choosing Telford and Shropshire, compared with previous years. This has led to over two million business visitors being welcomed to the region in 2016.
The number of association events held in the region has also increased across a range of venues, with The International Centre, Telford reporting a 50% increase in association events held over the last two years.
New events to the region include B-APCO (British Association of Public Communications Officers), Association for Cultural Enterprises, UK Serials Group, National Grid and AGA.
The announcement comes as Telford prepares for its 50th anniversary in 2018, an event which will mark the coming of age of a town that is being hailed as the fastest growing town in the Midlands (UK) *.
The increase in economic impact from events follows significant investment in the region, where almost £1bn has been invested in the last five years in developing transport, business and leisure infrastructure. This investment includes the iconic £250m Southwater development which is home to The International Centre, Telford, with its 15,000sqm event capacity and flexible auditorium and exhibition facilities.
Sarah Bird, destination tourism programme officer for Discover Telford, says: “Business events play a vital role in our growth strategy and so we are delighted to see more events choose our region; it is the ultimate endorsement. Our investment has always been about the customer, ensuring we are future fit for all needs and delivering an outstanding visitor experience. We are very proud of our events product and so we welcome more event organisers to Discover Telford for themselves.”
Investment in the region continues with the new 1,450 capacity conference auditorium recently opened at The International Centre, Telford, a £200m investment in Telford Shopping Centre to create an exciting new shopping destination, a £7m, glass-sided foot bridge linking Telford Central railway station with the town centre and convention district, new restaurants, leisure attractions as well as the £1.25m restoration of the world famous Iron Bridge.
Discover Telford is exhibiting at International Confex on stand D45C at Olympia, London until 2 March where the team will be showcasing its new events proposition and providing buyers with the chance to experience Telford in virtual with their state of the art 360 Telford Virtual Visit, an immersive virtual reality experience.
Representing over 40 venues and service providers, the destination team will be joined by representatives from some of their leading venues including The International Centre, Telford, Southwater Events Group, Ironbridge Gorge Museums, QHotels’ Telford Hotel and Golf Resort and leading outdoor venue the QEII Arena located in Telford Town Park.