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Tash Meet in Leeds

BABY-FACE

I have been an Event Manager at the University of Leeds now for 5 years, and though I love my job, I will be hanging up my event manager shoes (polished black kitten heels) to take on a new role for the next few months, becoming a first time mum (a role for which I’m guessing the shoes are flatter and more comfortable – perhaps Ugg boots or slippers?!)

I’m hoping my current role will stand me in good stead for my new one. For example, part of my job is to anticipate requirements before the client does, by making signs, arranging water for speakers and organising the air con to be on in hot summer months, I’ll probably still have to do this sort of thing, but in my own house.

“When I’m used to the responsibility of conferences for hundreds or even thousands of people, looking after just one tiny one can’t be that hard – can it?!!”

Another aspect is sending out conference information ensuring all guests to the University are aware of exactly which building and part of campus they should report to on arrival, what the travel and parking arrangements are, details of catering service, accommodation check in times and local amenities. I may not have to write these whilst I’m off work, but I have a feeling I will have to produce a similar document every time I leave the house or go somewhere new, so I am aware of the nearest changing facilities, chemist and buggy friendly café at all times.

Though for a time I will be swapping budgets for bottles and registrations for rusks, there are lots of exciting conferences taking place at the University which I will keep my eye on over the next few months, for example our degrees begin next week, and lead onto welcoming the Teach First Summer Institute back to campus for two weeks at the end of July. In addition to this we have one of the busiest September’s coming up too where we will welcome MEIbioeng 2015, Leeds International Piano Competition and a whole host of smaller day meetings and accommodation bookings.

Though I will be sad not to be part of making these events happen, I will no doubt enjoy my time with my new little one, and I’m sure will find some time over the next few months to pop in and frequent one of our delicious coffee bars. After all, when I’m used to the responsibility of conferences for hundreds or even thousands of people, looking after just one tiny one can’t be that hard – can it?!!

Tash Meet in Leeds

What takes 13 days, 3 exhibitions, 6 drink receptions, 4 conference dinners, 1658 delegates & a partridge in a pear tree*?

Is this the latest edition of a Tom Cruise franchise, I hear you ask…

No, this is another successful conference season facilitated by MEETinLEEDS Event Managers in collaboration with Great Food at Leeds.

EAUC-Exhibition-Centre

Aside from being about egg box creations, Bank Holidays & lots of chocolate – Easter is one of the busiest times for the University in terms of conferences and events and this year was no different. The conference team facilitated 8 conferences ranging from the well-known University’s Suppliers Easter Fair to the I-can’t-even-hope-to-understand likes of the 11th Photovoltaic Science, Application & Technology Conference.

What our team lacks in photovoltaic knowledge we make up for in the specialist knowledge of conference facilitation.

Thankfully, what our team lacks in photovoltaic knowledge we make up for in the specialist knowledge of conference facilitation. With so many events taking place over the same few days it is especially important that we ensure all visitors know exactly where they are meant to be and when, so that they have the best possible journey to their conference and welcome from the University which we call home!

Our team are dedicated to ensure that each conference has a fantastic experience on the University campus and hope that in the future if they can return to us, they do.

But don’t take my word for it, check out our twitter feed @meetinleeds.  Here are just a few comments which have been tweeted this Easter:

 

So if you have a conference or event you need help with (and Ethan Hunt isn’t available) turn Mission Impossible into MEETinLEEDS and give us a shout.

*** This blog post will self destruct in 5 seconds ***

 

*fabricated for comic purposes.

Jeremy Bradshaw and the Teach First Delivery Team Winner of the Special Award for Contribution to Business Tourism in Leeds
Jeremy-Bradshaw-and-the-Teach-First-Delivery-Team-Winner-of-the-Special-Award-for-Contribution-to-Business-Tourism-in-Leeds1

Natalie Ruecroft (3rd from left) and Natasha Rahanu (3rd from right) of the MEETinLEEDS team

We are proud to announce that MEETinLEEDS hard work has been recognised at a glittering Leeds Hotels and Venues Association’s (LHVA) awards ceremony on 13th June 2014.

The LHVA awards celebrate the best in service from over 30 hotels and venues across the city.

Stars of the sector were invited to the special ceremony at Leeds United’s Centenary Pavilion on Thursday, June 12, which was hosted by TV legend Harry Gration.

MEETinLEEDS, along with Well Met, were nominated for the ‘Top Team’ award for the delivery of TeachFirst’s Summer Institute residential training programme. The combined events held by Teach First in Leeds will be worth £5.5m to the city’s economy in 2014 and 2015, plus additional revenue that delegates will bring to their stay in the city. The MEETinLEEDS sales team, which in this case was spearheaded by Natalie Ruecroft, have been working with the events team from Leeds Metropolitan for almost two years in order to secure Teach First’s Summer Institute, a huge event which, in previous years, has taken place at the University of Warwick.

Natasha Rahanu, Event Manager at MEETinLEEDS says:

“It was fantastic to be nominated involved in the LHVA Awards Ceremony. At the beginning of the night we were honoured with a ‘Special Award for Contribution to Business Tourism’, recognising our collaborative work on the Teach First Project, between institutions & also with First Direct Arena & Accommodation in Leeds, including Unite. It was a great feeling to be recognised for the hard work we have done, and that we still have to do!”

The Summer Institute this year will be attended by approximately 2700 delegates, which is set to rise to 4000 in 2015.

Roll on another Busy Summer for the MEETinLEEDS team in 2015!

 

If you are attending the Teach First Summer Institute you can find out some of our favourite places in Leeds on our blog.

I had the pleasure of being the Conference Manager of the AKTIVE 2014 (Advancing Knowledge of Telecare for Independence and Vitality in later lifE) conference at the University of Leeds on 8th and 9th April 2014. Financed by the Technology Strategy Board, the project is led by CIRCLE (Centre for Care, Labour and Equalities) at the University of Leeds, with partners Oxford Institute of Population Ageing at the University of Oxford, Tunstall Healthcare (UK) Ltd and Inventya Ltd.

The main conference took place in the Leeds University Business School, along with an exclusive exhibition and conference dinner in the venue of the month for May: the Refectory.

Plenary sessions at the event included a spot on the place of technology within an assisted lifestyle by Professor Heinz Wolff (Emeritus Professor of Bioengineering and Doctor of Science, Brunel University) and Esther Rantzen CBE, who, as founder of The Silver Line, addressed delegates under the title “Old Age is not for Cissies”.

TashNAlan

Tasha and Alan – The Dream Team!

Tasha and Alan- The Dream Team!

The conference was Event Managed by me and Alan Gallacher, and with the focus on a demographic that is not traditionally catered for in either conferencing or mainstream technology, the planning and execution of the event was very rewarding. As the project is a charity we did encounter budgetary challenges, which we overcame through careful planning and a constant dialogue with the client. However, this did not compromise the quality of the event; a delicious lunch from the new Deli(very) Summer Specials menu (Summer Picnic on day 1, A Taste of Summer on day 2), a Gala Dinner with wine reception, poster sessions, orchestras, famous speakers, exhibitions, and much more. With MEETinLEEDS you really do get bang for your buck!

The use of new technology, such as using Google+ “Hangouts” to broadcast plenary sessions and hosting the Leeds Citizens Orchestra during the conference dinner are new and exciting challenges for us. The excitement was reciprocated by the Citizens Orchestra, as they had the opportunity to grace the same stage as The Who did for “Live at Leeds”.

At its heart, the Aktive project focused upon better knowledge and understanding of individual needs, and how telecare products & services can be designed and installed to optimise those needs. Elderly participants recognised that telecare helped them to hold onto highly valued aspects of their lives, and to preserve their character as an active, independent or capable person by retaining a sense of self and confidence. As part of a wider support network, telecare gave users the confidence to try new activities that they previously found difficult. As people nowadays generally live longer, how society reacts to the needs of its senior members is an issue that is in the media zeitgeist, such as The Silver Line, Age UK and Sport Relief. The positive impacts of telecare, such as feeling safer and more connected to others, a greater sense of confidence to self-manage many aspects of their own care, and strengthening their ties with friends and neighbours are aspects of getting older that I rarely (if ever) thought about. This made me consider about the challenges which my older relatives face on a daily basis and the technological advances that are now available to assist them, which I have been sharing with my family at every gathering!

Sue Yeandle, project Director and Professor of Sociology at the University of Leeds summed up my thoughts succinctly: “Aktive’s research clearly demonstrates that more needs to be done by health and wellbeing boards to make full use of telecare which can have a positive effect on the lives of older people. But so much more could be achieved if telecare was integrated into campaigns around health and social care.”

The MEETinLEEDS team managed a number of events over our busy Easter season, so click to find out what we have been up to!

If you would like to enquire about hosting a managed event please contact our Sales Team at enquiries@meetinleeds.co.uk or 0113 343 6100.

MEETinLEEDS is proud to welcome the AKTIVE 2014 (Advancing Knowledge of Telecare for Independence and Vitality in later lifE) conference to the University of Leeds on 8th and 9th April 2014. Financed by the Technology Strategy Board, the project is led by CIRCLE (Centre for Care, Labour and Equalities) at the University of Leeds, with partners Oxford Institute of Population Ageing at the University of Oxford, Tunstall Healthcare (UK) Ltd and Inventya Ltd.

The conference brings together researchers, industry, voluntary sector and local authorities interested in the role of telecare and other technologies in supporting older people at home.

TashNAlan

Natasha and Alan from MEETinLEEDS

Natasha and Alan from MEETinLEEDS

The conference is Event Managed by MEETinLEEDS, and with the focus on a demographic that is not traditionally catered for in either conferencing or mainstream technology, the planning and execution of the event has been a rewarding challenge for the Conference team, in particular the Conference Managers Natasha Rahanu and Alan Gallacher. The use of new technology, such as using Google+ “Hangouts” to broadcast plenary sessions and hosting the Leeds Citizens Orchestra during the conference dinner are new and exciting challenges for the team and facilities on offer.

The main conference will take place in the MEETinLEEDS venue of the month for April, Leeds University Business School, along with an exclusive exhibition and conference dinner in the Refectory.

Plenary sessions at the event include a spot on the place of technology within an assisted lifestyle by founder of the Institute of Bio-engineering at Brunel University, Professor Heinz Wolff (Emeritus Professor of Bioengineering and Doctor of Science, Brunel University) and Esther Rantzen CBE, who, as founder of The Silver Line, will be addressing delegates under the title “Old Age is not for Cissies”.

There is a whole host of associated events, publications and programmes to enjoy, so to find out more about the conference please see the following details: