BCSC rebooks Liverpool for spring 2009 conference

The powerful retail trade body, the British Council of Shopping Centres, will hold its annual management conference at the Arena & Convention Centre Liverpool next March.

The spring conference is jointly hosted with the College of Estate Management, and aims to provide "a superb forum for the exchange of ideas".

Further details of the event have yet to be revealed, beyond the dates of 2 to 4 March 2009.

The news comes as the thriving ACC prepares to welcome 3,000 delegates to BCSC's annual conference in November. Liverpool city centre hotels are fully booked for the days of the conference, according to the event's hotel reservation agency within The Mersey Partnership. Late bookers are being referred to hotels in Wirral, as well as near Liverpool John Lennon Airport and in Knowsley.

Jacquie Rogers, general manager of the BT Convention Centre within ACC, said: "The British Council of Shopping Centres conference is one of the highlights in what has been an extremely busy year.

"It is a testament to the quality of the service and surroundings we offer at the BT Convention Centre, and the BCSC's confidence in our ability to deliver, that they have already re-booked our venue for their 2009 conference.

"November is set to continue the year's successes with delegate numbers exceeding 6,000."

BCSC said it anticipates guests will spend on average £500 a head over the duration of the conference; £1.5m in total.

Pamela Jones, property and construction partner at law firm Hill Dickinson LLP, is among the Liverpool-based delegates attending the conference. She commented: "It's an exciting time for the city in retail terms and interest levels in the BCSC Conference reflect this. Liverpool has leapt into fifth place in national retail rankings and is home to the largest retail-led city centre renewal project in Europe.

"Massive investment into Liverpool's retail infrastructure will be evident for all those attending the BCSC Conference and this, in turn, will be the catalyst for further investment. Liverpool has positioned itself as the prime location for this type of industry event and, as a result, will benefit from a further economy boost as thousands of delegates flood into the city."

Headline speakers at the event, taking place from 10 to 12 November, include former deputy prime minister, Lord Heseltine. It will kick off with a party in the Chavasse Park on the Tuesday night hosted by Grosvenor.

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