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Spanish Boost for Bay Conferences

Spanish Boost for Bay Conferences

Torbay is going international this year to attract more conference business.

As the conference season gets into full swing with the prospect of thousands of delegates coming to the resort to boost trade through the quiet winter months, Conference Torquay is jetting off to Spain in a bid to attract more international business for the Bay in future years. Conference Torquay, run by the Riviera International Centre, will be representing the centre and local hoteliers.

Barry Cole, managing director of the centre, and Nicky Harding, manager of Conference Torquay, and Sally Everton, of the Imperial Hotel, will be in Barcelona later this month to man a stand at a major international conference exhibition.

The global business travel, meetings and incentives exhibition EIBTM is running from November 27th to 29th.

Mr Cole explained: "With the opening up of Flybe flights to Exeter, and with the help of grant funding from Visit Britain, we are going to the Barcelona exhibition for the first time. We have already started to see more international visitors coming through the airport and we would like to attract international conferences to the Bay in conjunction with the hotels. It should be quite an exciting event as we also expect to see the organisers of larger British conferences who perhaps no longer go to CONFEX, the national event."

The conference season kicked off at the centre with 530 delegates from as far afield as Japan spending five nights in the Bay for the International Meeting on Organic Geochemistry.

The next big event is the National Childminding Association Annual Conference from November 9th to 11th, which will attract 900 delegates for three nights.

From November 12 to 13 some 250 delegates will spend two nights in the Bay for the New Horizons: Liberating Surgical Teams Conference. This is aimed at those whose work involves an operating theatre, and is organised by the Centre of Innovation and Training in Elective Care at South Devon NHS Foundation Trust in association with the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement.

Delegates will be looking at the whole process of delivering care chosen by the patient or the doctor and the factors that affect the use of surgical theatre time.

The leader of the Salvation Army, General Shaw Clifton and his wife Commissioner Helen Clifton will be in Torbay for November 17 and 18 for the western division Salvation Army Annual Conference that will attract 1,500 delegates.

In January the Riviera International Centre will be hosting the Torquay Fair 2008 attracting 5,000 gift buyers for up to nine nights from January 13th.

At the end of February 1,000 delegates will be in Torbay for three nights for the Rotary International District 1100 Annual Conference 2008. This comprises 64 Rotary Clubs in an area stretching from Worcester in the South Midlands down to Bristol and North Somerset, across to Swindon in Wiltshire, and also taking in two clubs in Monmouthshire.

Mr Cole said the conference season was about average for the centre, but they are very busy with seasonal events between now and Christmas.

Courtesy of Herald Express 7th November 2007

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