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Meeting Planners’ Tips: The Best UK Cities for Business Events (PART 2)

2nd July 2014

Meeting planners are constantly on the look-out for new exciting and operational event locations, as they know choosing the right destination is not only the first step of the meeting planning process, but it can be crucial factor for the success of any business event. In part 1 of our UK MICE destination guide for meeting planners and events planners, we focussed on the business destinations London, Birmingham and Manchester.

Meeting Planners tips from Flightline business travel agentsIn the second part of our UK MICE feature we’ll focus on the cities Bristol, Leeds, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Bristol is the largest centre of culture, employment and education in its region and a major seaport with a long history of trading commodities. Today, Bristol is the home of many businesses from aerospace industry, defence, the media, information technology, financial services and tourism.

Meetings and Events
The wide selection of hotels, universities, sports stadia and conference centres along with some very special venues offer corporate meeting planners an exceptional choice of quality business event venues, within your budget. You may want to look at various types of venues when making your decision, such as city, creative and cultural, academic, historic, or green venues, which have been accredited through the Green Tourism Business Scheme (GTBS). Whatever type of corporate events, meetings or incentive travel you are planning in Bristol you may just find the right venue for your company.

Getting there & around
The city’s well-connected ground transportation network with easy access to rail services, motorway and Bristol Airport makes Bristol a very attractive business events destination for meeting planners and event organisers. For example, the city’s first of its two principal railway stations ‘Bristol Temple Meads’ is located near the centre and offers access to First Great Western services, including regular high speed trains to London Paddington alongside other local, regional and CrossCountry rail services. Bristol Parkway, the second main railway station in the north of the city, for example offers great connection to other major UK cities including, Cardiff, London, as well as CrossCountry services to Birmingham and North East England.

Located 200 miles from each, London and Edinburgh, Leeds is the third largest UK city and a prospering vibrant business hub for finance, insurance, legal and many other professional business services companies. It has over 30 national and international banks based in the city, such as First Direct, Yorkshire Bank, Barclays, HSBC, Santander, Lloyds Banking Group and RBS name a few.

Meetings and Events
Leeds is amongst the most cosmopolitan and innovative cities in the UK with excellent road, rail and air travel links, making the city a perfect business travel destination for meeting planners looking to bring together corporate delegates from all over the UK and the world. The city’s remarkable range of venues for corporate meetings and conferences offers companies solutions for smaller meetings through to large business events for up to 2,000 delegates. Some of the best conference venues can be found in Leeds’ impressive range of business event locations, such as the New Dock Hall and the Royal Armouries Museum along with the Leeds Metropolitan University, which has available 43,000-square-foot of events space.

Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh is often a preferred location for organising a memorable conference or corporate incentive group travel. Edinburgh inspires many meeting planners and attracts millions of visitors for leisure and business travel, being host to an unparalleled programme of international festivals and cultural events each year.

Meetings and Events
Among the city’s most known venues is the award-winning Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC), which is located in the heart of the city. The recently expanded EICC features 1,600 m2 of meetings and events space. Its state-of-the-art events facilities are suitable for small meetings with only 24 delegates as well as for large conferences with up to 2000 delegates. Other exceptional settings that may be of interest for corporate meeting planners and event organisers are, for example, the Merchants’ Hall and Cabaret Voltaire, Edinburgh Castle or the Royal Yacht Britannia, the former floating royal residence of Her Majesty The Queen.

Getting there & Around
Edinburgh International Airport is home of 40 airlines offering daily 301 domestic and international flights for leisure and business travellers to Europe and North America. The city can also be easily reached by train with e.g. an hourly service to London.


Being the host city for the XX Commonwealth Games in 2014, Glasgow is the first UK destination to be named a European Capital of Culture by the European Union. It is also one of the UK’s key economic centres outside of London and is home of many companies in manufacturing, financial and business services, communications, biotechnology, pharmaceutical and healthcare industry. Today, Glasgow has established itself as one of Europe’s most vibrant and cosmopolitan destinations, branded itself as “Glasgow: Scotland with Style” providing meeting planners and business events organisers a huge choice of excellent venues for corporate meetings, conferences and other business events.

Meetings & Events
Located in the heart of Glasgow the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC) offers an integrated conference and exhibition facility with flexible events space. It will improve its offering with the soon to open SSE Hydro Arena. Once completed, Glasgow will be the only meetings and events destination in Europe to have such a purpose built exhibition centre with a conference centre and arena on one site.

Getting there & around
Business travellers benefit from excellent transportation network with convenient rail services and air links making it easy to get around. Located only 8 miles from the city centre, Glasgow International Airport is the Scotland’s principal long-haul airport and transatlantic links. It accommodates approx. 30 airlines serving 100 destinations worldwide and offers direct long haul flights and transatlantic links worldwide. Glasgow’s second airport, Prestwick International Airport is government owned and the Scotland’s only rail-connected airport with direct rail services to Glasgow City centre. The airport is the main hub for the low cost airline Ryanair.

You would like to receive more personal advice on event venues or book group incentive travel? Simply contact us, our business travel

Here to help meeting planners and event planners choose the right MICE location

Flightline Travel Management has over 20 years of experience in helping SMEs and large companies to travel smarter on business. Event-Line, our specialist team of experienced meeting planners and business travel specialists know the inside outs of how to find the best MICE destinations and can help you arrange company group travel, book hotels accomodations and most important help you choose the right fit for your corporate travel needs. Call us today on 0844 332 0174 and speak to our knowledgable meeting planners from the Event-Line MICE travel team or make an online enquiry.

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