THE BARBICAN, EUROPE’S LARGEST ARTS AND CONFERENCE CENTRE

THE BARBICAN, EUROPE’S LARGEST ARTS AND CONFERENCE CENTRE

Miss London Concierge caught up with the fabulous Glenn Mainwaring to find out what they have been doing to ensure their guests feel safe and secure in these challenging times.  Since meeting Glenn 3 years ago, he has to been such a positive influence on the wonderful world of events and his passion and drive shines through in everything he does. He’s also a huge amount of fun!  

We first caught up with Glenn back in June in the middle of the countries full scale lock down but even though, like many of us, it was an unsettling time, event professionals and the events community stayed positive & focused and Glenn was a fine example of that.

Venues and Events are still facing many uncertainties but just like before, they are adapting and evolving to continue to deliver exceptional events.

Glenn, tell us a little bit about yourself and your role at the Barbican?

I have worked at the Barbican for 8 years now starting with our catering team Searcys, and then taking on the of Business Development Manager role.  My main role is to seek new business opportunities and manage our agency partnerships – which is how I met you!   

I don’t see myself ever leaving!  It is one of those iconic UK venues that has so much to offer, it’s creative, delivers exceptional events and the people perform at their best!

What do you love most about your role?

I do love the selling! I get incredibly involved and am very passionate about every proposal. I love to win business so when I don’t, I take it to heart!!! 😊

The Barbican is a non-for-profit organisation which means the commercial events we host are that much more important to us as this helps fund the Barbican’s initiative. No pressure!!

Do you have a favourite event space at The Barbican?

Everyone and I fall in love with the Conservatory because it really does have that WOW factor.  You walk in and its this giant jungle in the heart of London which nobody really knows about!!  

There are over 2,000 varieties of Tropical plants and can accommodate anything for up to 650 people standing, home to some wacky events in past but also weddings, product launches and yoga! I encourage you to come take a look!

Tell us about the types of events that you host at The Barbican?

The commercial events team organise anything from graduations for the major universities in London, private screenings, through to association events for over 1000 international delegates.

It’s an exciting part of my role when we get to travel across the world to bid for these exciting events in the hope to bring them to the UK.

Home to the London Symphony Orchestra and some terrific live events, the Barbican Hall, Cinemas or Frobisher training suites are very adaptable which has worked in our favour with live streaming and social distancing!

Is there a standout event that you have hosted at The Barbican that you have been really proud of?

We are very proud to host the Life Lessons event; this large festival took place earlier this year and was the first of its kind.  We were very involved throughout the entire process from the initial proposal, the event planning, and the delivery.  The festival focuses on ‘Life Lessons’ from inspirational speakers who have the experience to share their views and stories on mental health and wellbeing. Over the 2 days the delegates would listen to keynote speakers such as Ruby Wax, Darren Brown, Lilly Cole to name a few!  Yoga in the conservatory and samples of delicious healthy food throughout or even take part in minute mindful sessions – It was a jam-packed weekend full of insight.  We had over 6,000 people through the door for this absolutely amazing event! 

The Barbican is all about creativity and this event was just a perfect match for us.

What will you find at the Barbican now?

I am very pleased to say the Barbican is open to enjoy right now and we have a variety of live or digital events to participate.

Check out our what’s on page.  https://www.barbican.org.uk/whats-on

The Barbican is listening carefully to the government guidelines and is pleased to be delivery business events for up to 30 pax (all socially distance)

We’re fortunate enough to have several large dynamic spaces which can accommodate socially distance events in various layouts and are grateful to our clients for supporting us during this time.

And lastly, what specific social distancing measures have you put in place?

As we welcome you back, our number one priority is the health and wellbeing of our visitors and staff, so we have introduced a number of measures across the building to help everyone remain safe while they’re here.

We’re following the official Working Safety during Covid-19 Government guidance to make sure the whole building is Covid secure and have received the official ‘Good to Go’ industry standard from Visit Britain as well as the AIM Secure from the Meetings Industry Association (MIA) to recognise our safety measures.

 Here’s some of the things we’re doing to keep you safe:

• Reduced capacities in our event spaces in line with Government social distancing guidelines

• Clear signage to guide you safely around the Centre

• Regular and thorough cleaning of door handles, rails, toilets and other areas

• Changes to how you access toilets, lifts and stairs to ensure social distancing

• We’ll have toilets, including accessible toilets, in the Barbican Kitchen on Level G and on Level 3 near the Gallery. We’ll be there to direct you.

Thank you so much to Glenn for taking the time to speak with us.  Miss London Concierge are so excited to be hosting a very special Breakfast Event for our MLC Connects members at The Barbican in November so watch this space for a full write up of our guest’s experience.

For more information on hiring The Barbican for your next meeting, get in touch with Miss London Concierge today on info@misslondonconcierge.co.uk



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