London & Partners (L&P) launched a new Convention Bureau website this year with improved venue listing services, all-new search capabilities, and 360-degree panoramas. The new portal especially helps planners cull through all of London’s unique venue ideas, categorized in different styles and themes from “Quirky Venues” to “Venues With a View.”
There’s also a push to introduce London as the “Silicon Valley of the World.” In March, London Mayor Boris Johnson outlined the city’s new Tech City UK initiative in East London and adjacent Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park have become the biggest cluster of tech firms in Europe over the last three years. To help kick off L&P’s worldwide promotion of the region, the inaugural London Technology Week runs June 16-20.
Of the 50 tech accelerators and incubators for start-up companies in the UK, 32 of them are in London. The city also has 70 co-working spaces, where companies share office space and network in cross-industry collaboration. Co-work culture is becoming a global phenomenon. Many of these spaces are available for private events for visiting groups interested in interacting with London’s aggressive start-up community.
Last month London & Partners announced a new collaborative project called The Traveltech Lab, in partnership with The Trampery, which operates three co-work spaces in Tech City. The Trampery is a London-based social enterprise that designs and operates spaces for entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation. The goal is to support new travel technology, including event apps for meeting planners. London & Partners is sponsoring the project and providing networking support.
The Trampery’s three spaces are all designed to host groups events. The smallest, on a secluded road near Old Street, is The Trampery Bevenden Street. The interior space is a blend of an English country house and a contemporary art gallery, which has welcomed previous visitors ranging from the Duke of York to Prime Minister David Cameron.
The largest venue is The Trampery London Fields, situated in the heart of Hackney’s fashion and creative community. The 17,000-sf building consists of the 1880s Morley Hall and a 4-story 1960s addition.
In April, the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park finally reopened after being closed since the 2012 Summer Games. One of the most unique facilities built for the Olympics, the towering 375-foot-high ArcelorMittal Orbit sculpture is now welcoming groups on its upper deck with views stretching 20 miles across England’s capital. Capacity atop the fire engine red metal skelton is 180 seated or 250 reception style. The Orbit also offers additional group space on ground level nearby.