The British and International Golf Greenkeepers Association (BIGGA) has confirmed its Turf Management Exhibition (BTME) exhibition will run again in 2012 despite industry suggestions that it should merge with a rival show.
BTME was held at the Harrogate International Centre from 18 to 20 January. According to communications manager Scott MacCallum, total attendance (unaudited) was up 2.3 per cent year-on-year to just over 6,000. This was despite the absence of several of the industry’s largest manufacturers including Toro, John Deere and Kubato, who exhibit at the event every second year and will instead participate at this year’s rival Saltex show.
MacCallum confirmed BTME reduced from four to three halls this year as a result and featured 150 exhibitors.
“We’ve consolidated to suit the economic situation and housing a smaller event this year,” he told EN. “We’re pleased with who attended and that we were able to attract the visitors.”
Yet according to a report in Horticulture Week, several industry players are openly debating BTME’s future and flagged interest in merging the event with the Institute of Groundsmanship’s (IOG) Saltex exhibition, which will next be held from 6 to 8 September at Royal Windsor Racecourse. According to IOG, Saltex attracts 9,000 visitors annually.
MacCallum confirmed ongoing discussions with exhibitors and other associations but said BIGGA was already planning its own event in 2012. He was confident those biannual exhibitors missing in 2012 would return to BTME next year.
“While the two shows cover the same industry, they are different shows in terms of content, held at different times of the year and in alternate parts of the country,” he said. “Some people would like to see one show, but in reality, it’s not an easy thing to achieve.”
Harrogate International Centre appointed Angus Houston as its new director from this month.
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