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ACC Liverpool’s Bob Prattey – “We’re ready when you are!”

The UK government has yet to give its final nod of approval for large-scale business events, but managers at ACC Liverpool campus are gearing up for a busy October.

The waterfront venues, which comprise ACC Liverpool, Exhibition Centre Liverpool and M&S Bank Arena, are working on the assumption that conferences and exhibitions will be allowed to resume next month, despite PM Boris Johnson asserting in a press conference last week that the October 1 restart was ‘under review’ following a spike in the daily case rate of Covid-19.

Bob Prattey (left), CEO of The ACC Liverpool Group, said: “This has been a very challenging seven months for the events industry and we have liaised with our clients throughout this period to rearrange dates so that we are ready to go when we are able to. We will continue to closely monitor government updates in relation to the October 1 start date for business events and guidance for our industry, working closely with our clients and industry colleagues to plan for our restart. We are pleased to be able to host a diverse range of events over the coming months across all sectors – conference, entertainment and exhibitions – and are looking forward to welcoming people back and returning to what we do best – hosting top class events. We are pleased to be able to once again support and stimulate the visitor economy during this very difficult time and help the city get back on its feet.”

The first scheduled event is The Good Business Festival, on October 8, a hybrid event bringing together some of the biggest names in business and society who will debate the big issues facing a post-pandemic world.  Senior business leaders from some of the world’s leading companies including Google, Mastercard, Innocent, Oxfam, TUC, Greenpeace, Eden Project and Ipsos MORI will take part.

On October 12, the campus will host a tour and VIP reception for delegates from ALSD International – Europe’s leading event for the premium/VIP seat and sports hospitality sector – which takes place at Anfield.

The Ultimate Show takes place in the M&S Bank Arena on October 18 – a new automotive event featuring the best stance, performance and modified vehicles available in the UK.

“The health and safety of our visitors remains our number one priority and we would like to reassure all guests that, as a Covid-secure venue, stringent measures are already in place,” said Prattey.

The campus has introduced new compliance plans, in line with the government approved ‘All Secure Standard’ and as part of a series of accreditations received including VisitEngland’s We’re Good to Go industry standard and the UK-based Meetings Industry Association’s ‘AIM Secure’ standard for business events.

Measures include protective screens at welcome desks; hand sanitisers throughout; one-way systems; anti-viral electrostatic spraying machines; socially distanced meeting rooms and bathrooms as well as new digital and print messaging across the campus.  All events will be operating with social distancing and Covid measures in place.

The ACC Liverpool Group is a member of the event industry initiative ‘Project Confidence’ consisting of partners across industry bodies ESSA (Event Supplier and Services Association), the AEO (Association of Event Organisers) and AEV (Association of Event Venues). The group lobbied the government for clearer progress and guidelines around hosting conferences and exhibitions; resulting in the announcement of the October 1 start date for events.