Conference Winchester triumphs again

Press Release: 14/07/2005

The value of business tourism enquiries driven through Conference Winchester's one-stop venue-finding service has increased by 81% during the second year of trading. The average value of the enquiry has also increased by 72% on last year and members receiving enquiries from the venue-finding office are now getting a value of around £4,000 per booking.

This was the superb news that members of Conference Winchester, the consortium of meeting venues in the Winchester District, heard at their second AGM on Tuesday.

Held in the stylish Undercroft in the Winchester Cathedral's Inner Close, the AGM focused for the most part on details of business generated through the consortium over the past year and Diane Slater, director of the consortium's preferred agency Right Location, said it was a great result for all the partners.  

Growing confidence among the consortium's members has also seen the successful introduction of a membership subscription scheme. By creating a pooled budget, Conference Winchester has been able to plan a year of joint marketing activities to help generate new conference business for the District.

Hannah Lane, Conference Operations Manager at the University of Winchester and chair of Conference Winchester, said: "We have come a long way since the launch of Conference Winchester's venue-finding service, particularly considering that the partnership has, in the past, relied solely on funding in kind from its members and support from Winchester City Council with which to promote itself.  

"There is an exciting time ahead now that we have initiated a proper membership scheme. With continued support from the City Council we can look forward to organising an array of promotional campaigns to raise even greater awareness of Winchester as a perfect location for conferences. We are looking at a target for next year of almost half a million pounds worth of enquiries coming into the District."

Councillor Thérèse Evans, Winchester City Council's portfolio holder for Culture, Heritage and Sport, said: "The success of Conference Winchester has clearly raised the profile of business tourism within the Winchester District. Its one-stop venue-finding service, together with the diversity and quality of its consortium venues, has helped us put Winchester firmly on the conference map."

For conference enquiries and copies of the new brochure, telephone 0870 744 7022 or visit www.conferencewinchester.org.uk