We deal with many clients that need help facilitating large scale events or are looking for a suitable venue that can hold 500+ delegates. Actually, finding ‘that’ suitable venue and one that can accommodate a big group booking, a large conference or an immense gala dinner is not an easy task on many levels. The process needs thinking through carefully.
To start with you will need to think about the location, with lots of delegates you will need to have given some serious thoughts to the logistics. How will the guests get there, is there parking facilities available, if people are driving do you need marshals? If you have decided to coach people in then where can the guests disembark the bus, is it safe and is there space for any of the vehicles to stay on site? Where is the nearest train station? And that’s just the beginning….
Then you need to think about the space available inside. What do you need to be incorporated into the event. You see when a venue that states it has a capacity for 500 theatre style it might not have taken into account space for a large set for example and is there space for a suitable registration desk. There is a lot of information on the web which I can, hand on heart, tell you is not entirely accurate which of course doesn’t help you when youre looking to plan a large event. We know, we do this type of event all the time. Fortunately for our clients we have the experience and knowledge to know which venue works well for what size of group. What’s more, we save our clients oodles of time with the venue search – it’s a free venue finding service, it’s efficient and we do what we say on the tin, which is source good venues at good prices, within budget and that work.
I diverse – once you have chosen your venue you need to think about the infrastructure inside. Access for the guests, breakout rooms, team building areas, toilets, room layout. Is there natural daylight anywhere in the venue that your guests can benefit from, crew areas, signage, power supplies – the list is endless. Then there is the matter of catering – most people remember the food aspect of an event, and it is in fact an area that most people like to ‘feedback’ on (often whether you ask for it or not!) If you have big numbers then believe me when I say you need to have nailed the logistics of the food and beverage. How many people do you need to cater for and how much time do you have? We recently did a conference for 1000 people and the time available for the lunch break was limited, in addition to which the client definitely did not want the guests to be in a queue for any length on time. With this in mind we chose a venue that had a substantial gallery with many access points, this meant that with the assistance of our marshals we were able to cater for all 1000 delegates at multiple buffet stations quickly and efficiently. It worked well, delegates were happy and so was our client. For the gala dinner in the evening the room had to be turned around so that the guests were seated on round tables, the challenge – everybody eating at the same time, as my pet hate is when a room isn’t serviced correctly, and one half of the room has finished their meals whilst the other half haven’t even got theirs. Again the client was thrilled; our catering team was split in sub teams meaning that we could do a big sweep of the room enabling everyone to enjoy their food together. Perfect.
So, if you need a big venue I suggest giving us a call. There is a lot to think about and our initial expertise will cost you nothing. We know what to ask you and what to get out of a venue in order to create a successful event. Big events can be beasts if they are not managed properly and believe me you don’t want to unleash a beast when you are making such a substantial investment! Let our friendly and dedicated PCO team take the beast out of your event – we are based in Birmingham, Brighton, London, Bristol, Norwich, Leeds and Sheffield. Call now 0845 413 3030 or email email@example.com