This week, Unique Venues of London's Managing Director, Lisa Hatswell, focuses on the contribution the association makes to the city from driving business tourism to securing the capital's cultural heritage.
London is arguably the world’s number one business hub, where people from all corners of the globe come to meet, mingle and thrive, both personally and professionally.
Unemployment is the lowest it has been in fifty years[i] and as companies grow, corporate events organisers are increasingly looking to spend on seminars and team gatherings. The events industry in the UK is worth a staggering £42.3 billion as of September 2018, with business events such as conferences and meetings accounting for the largest proportion of the industry’s total value at £19.9 billion.[ii]
As the events industry booms, unusual and alternative venues are swiftly emerging as options for event locations with a twist.
Unique Venues of London, an association that represents 87 culturally significant and landmark spaces across the capital such as royal palaces, historic institutions and contemporary museums, caters specifically to those looking for something slightly different when it comes to venue hire. Hosting thousands of conferences and business events each year, the membership (and wider association) champions the value in all types of gatherings and their contribution to the capital’s coffers.
The association also places a great deal of importance on London-centric corporate social responsibility. By offering a large selection of venues which can be hired as event spaces, it helps to create a revenue stream which feeds back into the cultural heritage of the capital. Gatherings held by Unique Venue of London members directly support the city’s economy and help to sustain the ongoing work of the venues, thus preserving them for future generations. For example, several member venues are registered charities, and all events income directly supports a number of worthy local education and community programmes.
As international corporations increasingly host events in the UK [iii], Unique Venues of London is working to promote London to businesses both domestically and abroad. One way in which the association is achieving this, is through raising awareness of events that are sustainable and focus on wellbeing, which are progressively becoming the norm worldwide.
From providing delegates with healthy catering to events held in outdoor spaces, an emphasis on physical and mental wellness has universal appeal. Wellbeing conferences can help improve productivity in the workplace and food rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids enhance levels of concentration and positively contribute to memory and mood.[iv]
Further, most unusual venues also provide the latest technology to make such events possible and ensure the UK remains a top events destination.[v]
As the workforce increases in size, new ideas are developing for teambuilding and business-related get-togethers. In all, unique venues are ideal locations for meetings, conferences, and morale-boosting events, and hosting gatherings in these settings helps to support the economy and maintain London’s rich history and culture.