Report: AEV eGuide Working Group, October 20th 2016
The Association of Event Venues eGuide Working Group met for the last time this year at the Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate on October 20th with Jonathan Smith of Farnborough International in the Chair.
Smith opened the meeting with a welcome to the eighteen group members and guests, and thanked the Yorkshire Event Centre for hosting the meeting and providing lunch.
After the reading of the apologies, the minutes of the last meeting were unanimously approved and the group moved straight onto the agenda's discussion topics.
Starting with the subject of third party rigging, hoist & fix, the group noted that several venues had raised the issue because there appeared to be different systems in place for third party rigging at different venues. Since the last meeting , the Working Group subcommittee met with engineering firms, PLASA and rigging companies to discuss a possible harmonisation of processes across all venues to ensure only competent riggers are permitted to work with venue fixings.
This subcommittee meeting led to a review of the whole rigging section of the eGuide, and to ensure completeness, a review of the Stand Plans section also ensued. The updated sections drafted by the subcommittee meeting were circulated to the eGuide working group ahead of this meeting, together with a few proposal forms that covered the whole process. The group identified that consistency of process was essential, and agreed that the eGuide subcommittee should continue to work on drafting the guideline documents. Group members were asked to take the subcommittees drafts back to their organisations and confirm their agreement on the clarification of the different kinds of banners.
The group then reviewed the protocol and timetable for changes to the eGuide. It was unanimously agreed that there should be a well-established timeline for changes to the eGuide, to avoid a late rush of post-deadline alterations in the weeks before publication. The subcommittee was asked to meet in December to discuss this issue.
The group noted that all group members are required to respond to draft papers, even if there are no objections. The group concurred on the need for greater adherence to the deadlines for amendments and updates to the eGuide, and asked the eGuide subcommittee to devise a draft timescale for updates for review by the working group, in addition to proposals for a more efficient schedule of meetings and publishing dates in order to reduce the lag time between changes being agreed and them appearing in the revised eGuide.
The discussion topics continued with the group receiving an update on Neo Systems, the production of a database of stand plan companies, and the possibility of some changes to the eGuide weapons section.
The group then moved on to plentiful round table news and member updates. Paul Brough of Olympia and Keith Gorman of Liverpool ACC both spoke about their support of the “Stop the Drop” campaign, and wider safety issues.
AEV Director, Rachel Parker appraised the group of some internal changes at AEV including the appointment of Dani Bull as membership executive, and the creation of Board member steering groups to look at different areas of the AEV. Parker also told the group that the AEV 2017 Conference date and venue have been set to June 29, 2017, at The Vox, Birmingham, and concluded with the news that the AEV will be refreshing its brand and launching a new website.
The meeting then proposed agenda items for the next meeting, generated by the eGuide subcommittee meeting on rigging, including updates to the Rigging section, updates to the Stand Plans section and a draft timescale for eGuide updates, meetings and publication.
The dates of the next meetings were proposed and provisionally agreed as Wednesday, March 22 at ExCeL London and Thursday, October 19 at a venue to be agreed.
The meeting concluded with Any Other Business, where Rachel Parker drew the groups attention to a semi-permanent cosmetic treatment known as ‘microblading' and asked if any members had had experience of it. An AEV member had encountered some confusion when approaching their local council for advice. Sian Richards and Linda Ritchie of Olympia London and The NEC respectively agreed to look into the possible impact of new cosmetic treatments, including microblading, and report back to the group.
Kim Dance reported that she had been contacted by ESSA on behalf of a member to find out what the procedure would be for including the use of lithium power packs for powering stands, including AV and catering equipment, at venues, and ultimately in the eGuide. The group suggested that the best place to start would be to ask for a concise one page summary of the technology and objectives. Dance agreed to request this from the ESSA member.
Closing the meeting, Smith thanked the members for attending, and Richard Moorhouse and the Yorkshire Event Centre for hosting the group.