“The Prime Minister’s announcement today (17 July 2020) giving conferences and exhibitions the green light to recommence from October is encouraging news for a sector that has desperately needed clarity in recent weeks. While this is a welcome first step, we now await more precise details from the government about how our partners can safely reopen. In the meantime, it is also critical that venues in our events industry are not ignored and receive further economic assistance to rebuild.

“Health and wellbeing remains the number one priority, and many of our West Midlands events venues have proactively produced guidance and signed up to VisitEngland’s ‘We’re Good to Go’ accreditation scheme to highlight safe practice. We have also made the government aware of the region’s expertise and willingness to support with plans for pilot events. 

“The West Midlands is one of the country’s principal business tourism destinations. It welcomes the highest proportion of business visits to the UK, with the events sector contributing significantly to the region’s £12.6 billion visitor economy. As the Prime Minister himself acknowledged, there is no substitute for face-to-face interaction, and we look forward to hosting organisers and welcoming delegates back safely to meet in the West Midlands once more.”