Report: AEV Event Managers Working Group 13.03.19


Report: AEV Event Managers Working Group 13.03.19

15 Mar 2019 by: Alden Arnold



Not even Storm Gareth could keep us away.

Event Managers from 13 member venues congregated at Manchester Metropolitan University on 13th March. Welcomed with an array of tasty refreshment the group shared their travel adventures and took the opportunity to catch up. They then welcomed the students and settled in for a combined workshop/think tank session led by Lucy Pittaway, Senior Lecturer in Events Management & Level 6 Year Manager.

The session follows the successful MMU Connect Conference on October 26, 2018, which was supported by AEV and it was attended by several of our members where events management students and event professionals met. It was an opportunity for students to quiz event professionals and find out how best to get their careers off the ground after graduation, and get answers to industry-related questions from the source. This collaboration led to our meeting on Wednesday. It seemed a logical approach to bring the event managers who work for the venues of today together with those of the future.

After a short introduction from Lucy and venue representatives, Alden Arnold, AEV Project Manager presented the ethos behind the AEV, its purpose and current state of play and direction the collective are heading. Closing with a look at venue legacy and the investment in the industry’s future (i.e. TECA, ICC Wales, Olympia investments, proposed openings of Magazine London and the “Sphere”) the students gained a solid understanding of the venue world and the benefits membership to such an Association can bring.


Michelle Baldwin (NEC), Tom Edwards (ExCeL London), Dean Meehan (Manchester Central) and Lynne Guthrie (SEC) took to the floor, in turn presenting their respective venues to the group.

Lucy then fielded relevant questions and the students noted down panel responses, which in turn will help with their end of year projects/dissertations. The remaining venues who were sat at each table also gave response, giving a broader opinion/experience for the students to absorb.


After a short break a round table think tank session commenced. Students moved from table to table, each table being led by the venue representatives which gave the students the ability to explore subjects pertinent to their course (e.g sustainability, technology).


Insights shared and learning through real life experiences. Collaboration. A successful day all round.

Thank you to our members who attended, the panel, Lucy, MMU and their students and Storm Gareth.

A repeat of this type of event will happen again so watch this space!


It is always invaluable to take advantage of these opportunities to learn more about the industry I am progressing in!” MMU Event Management Student

Another amazing experience yesterday gaining insight from industry professionals! It was great to hear their opinions on current issues within venues and how expectations of clients and delegates has changed over the past 10 years.” MMU Event Management Student

“Brilliant -what an opportunity for our students” – Senior Lecturer MMU

“It was a great success and amazing that so many of the EM working group could attend .  We wanted to say thank you as we also got an incredible amount from the experience.” – AEV member



  • "Great day hosting our first AEV working group event!..WOW did I learn a lot and some great insights into how other venues work and the challenges they are trying to overcome. If you are a venue looking to network with other like minded professionals I would recommend looking at joining the AEV".
    Danielle Worker
    Corporate Events Team Leader, Silverstone Circuits Ltd
  • "“Great essential for a successful venue. The AEV provides a platform to establish consistent best practice in this field"
    Phil Wetz
    Retail & Catering Manager, ExCeL London
  • “The AEV provides collective representation for its member venues, turning individual commitment into a group effort"
    Paul Brough
    Venue Health & Safety Manager, Olympia London
  • "Proud to be part of this Cross Association discussion. I am confident in our ability to improve and progress our working platform through conversation".
    Amir Vered
    Head of eForce and IT, Olympia London (Chair of Cross Association Technology WG)
  • “The AEV is essential to the venue sector’s ability to cooperate and collaborate"
    Jazmin Beale
    Head of Marketing & Communications, Olympia London
  • “The AEV undertakes crucial work on behalf of event venues up and down the country to ensure our voice is heard. They reinforce the important role our sector plays in delivering economic impact, increasing trade, providing jobs and driving the visitor economy.”
    Lucy Merritt
    Head of Marketing and Communications, ExCeL London
  • AEV Membership is a key part of our business strategy; it has and will continue to be a core elements of our plan to support knowledge sharing in the industry and to develop both our team and the venue.
    Kate Vandenburg
    Marketing Director - Business Design Centre
  • Our team at ACC Liverpool feel indebted to the substantial work that the AEV do for our amazing industry. As the pillar association for venues across the country it’s a real privilege for our teams to participate in many of the working groups, learning and contributing to new processes which helps drive our industry forward on a national scale.
    Colm Graham
    Senior Exhibition Account Manager, ACC Liverpool
  • We have benefited hugely from all of the insight, discussion, events and networking, but it has also meant that we have been able to give back to the industry by sharing our unique experiences and professional knowledge and allowing our employees to help lead and shape the Association from the inside.
    Mathew James
    Head of Brand, Telford International Centre
  • “The AEV has been an invaluable asset to us as a company and the wider industry, helping to lobby on the industries behalf, consolidating and distributing information and facilitating vital knowledge sharing.”
    Charlie Hodgson
    Managing Director at The Kia Oval