Blackpool's new conference centre in the shop window

How the Winter Gardens conference centre will look
How the Winter Gardens conference centre will look
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Blackpool’s new conference centre is set to be put in the shop window for the first time at a major exhibition.

The Winter Gardens and Visit Blackpool will showcase the plans for the new £25m venue at the international show at Olympia next Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Meetings Show 2017 is set to attract 3,000 visitors and Blackpool’s stand will be among 7,000 others from rival destinations plus hotels and venues.

But the Blackpool team aim to target meeting and event organisers with the resort’s improved conference and exhibition offer due to come on stream from Spring 2019 with its 6,150 square metres of exhibition and conference space.

The team hopes the new centre, part-funded from Lancashire’s Growth Deal allocation, will prove a turning point in attracting major conferences back to the resort to boost the economy.

VisitBlackpool Tourism Manager Mandy Tythe-McCallum said, “It is vital for Blackpool to have a presence at events such as The Meetings Show.

“This is the premier meeting and events show for both national and international organisers and it gives us the opportunity to talk about Blackpool, its plans for the future and all the resort has to offer.

“There’s an outdated perception about what Blackpool can offer and it’s our job to change that perception, these views are both outdated and simply no longer fit with what’s available in resort, we hope to reconnect with those that have considered Blackpool in the past and also encourage new buyers to come along and take look at our 21st century offer.”

Michael Williams, Managing Director of the Winter Gardens Blackpool comments, “‘The Meetings Show presents the perfect opportunity to showcase the exciting new development which is set to take place at the Winter Gardens Blackpool, along with the facilities already on offer here and across the resort to more than 3,000 industry professionals.

“The exhibition is a calendar highlight for anyone involved in organising meetings and events; providing exciting and inspiring ideas along with exclusive offers and expert advice.”

The show also features more than 80 free-to-attend educational sessions delivered by top creative thinkers in the industry.

Alan Cavill, Director of Places at Blackpool Council said: “These events are vital for us to attend as it’s crucial that Blackpool maintains its high profile.

“It’s an opportunity to promote the resorts conference offer, and it’s plans for the future to organisers who might not have visited the resort for some time or even considered Blackpool for their itineraries.”

See also: Go-ahead for conference centre