Bluewater Events Venue has revealed 12 consumer exhibitions are booked into the venue pending its launch later this year.
The announcement was made at a topping out ceremony marking the final phase of the venue’s construction. Bluewater venue director Rebecca Cardozo said confirmed events covered health and beauty, craft, baby and toddler and gift markets. All are feature-led and tie into efforts to give visitors to Bluewater a new interactive experience, she said.
Work on the 5,200sqm facility, which includes two exhibition halls and a VIP gallery area, is due to be completed in late 2011. As previously reported in EN, Bluewater’s launch exhibition partner Clarion Events will run the first two shows in December: The Spirit of Christmas and the Fine Festive Fair.
This week, VOS Media also announced it will run a boutique version of its Vitality Show at Bluewater next April.
“We are developing a new breed of venue and working in true partnership with organisers to put on inspiring, experience-led events,” Cardozo said. “We are taking the approach of sharing information with organisers and seeing what will work best in our new space.
“Shows that are coming here represent a different take on existing offers, such as Spirit of Christmas. Organisers see an opportunity with Bluewater – we’re not a replacement for existing venues.”
Speakers at the topping out ceremony included representatives from Bluewater owner Lend Lease, local politicians and construction company BAM. During his speech, Dartford councillor Jeremy Kite stressed the importance of Bluewater’s event plans to the local community. He pointed out the shopping centre created a significant number of jobs since opening in 1999 and is at the heart of the local area.
The latest venue development opened the door for events of national significance to be held in Dartford, he claimed.
“Dartford is not a pin on an investment map, it’s a community,” councillor Kite continued. “With this new events venue, we have an opportunity to engage the best events and provide a leisure opportunity as well. We will now be recognised as a place where good things happen.
“Bluewater is a backdrop to people’s lives and they will have an opportunity to experience new things here.”
Pictured (L-R): Leader of Dartford Borough Council Jeremy Kite; Mayor for Dartford Patrick Coleman; Bluewater general manager Andrew Parkinson; venue director Rebecca Cardozo; MP for Dartford Gareth Johnson
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