The Business Visits & Events Partnership (BVEP) is the umbrella body and advocacy group representing every part of the UK events sector. Its members include all of the leading event trade bodies and membership organisations, destinations and lead government departments including DCMS, BEIS and DiT.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the BVEP has been working closely with its partners and government departments to ensure the industry is up to date on current restrictions and guidelines and aware of what support packages have been made available. It has also undertaken a programme of lobbying, through its Government Relations & Advocacy Group, to ensure that the industry is provided with a clear voice to government Ministers and Officials and that their needs and concerns are presented through regular evidence-based briefings. The BVEP has also continued to work closely with other recognised stakeholder and advocacy groups, including the Tourism Alliance, UK Events Industry Board, UK Hospitality, UK Inbound, The Tourism Industry Emergency Group and the APPG for Events to coordinate and support wider lobbying activities.
These activities have been increased and expanded as the pandemic has taken its toll on the industry, and the need for urgent help has grown. While many of these activities may largely have gone unnoticed by the industry, we believe it is important to outline the many actions that have and continue to be taken to support the events sector, especially as we begin our long-awaited journey towards recovery.
Key activities November 2020 – January 2021 In the last quarter, the BVEP has undertaken a significant range of activities in support of the industry and its partner members, specifically;
- Meeting with Partners to learn their concerns and key issues to enable collation of industry-wide policies and representations
- Attending regular meetings and carrying out both scheduled briefings with Officials and Ministers from DCMS & BEIS
- Holding direct meetings with the Secretary of State and Ministers from DCMS & Ministers from BEIS
- In conjunction with government officials, collated an industry wide survey to provide an overall picture of industry viability and status relating to support packages for submission to the Treasury
- Meeting with Treasury Officials to explain industry concerns and request additional business support
- Meeting with the Secretariat of the Culture Media & Sport Select Committee to ask that future enquiries should include, as appropriate, evidence from the events sector
- Meeting with Alex Sobell MP, Shadow Minister for Tourism, to brief him on the issues confronting the Industry
- Attending meetings of the Tourism Industry Emergency Response Group (TIER) and providing daily briefings to partners
- Developing a specific Budget Submission to Treasury in consultation with Partners and DCMS which recommended nine key areas of financial support
- Providing a briefing from Partners to the Chair and Officers of the newly reformed All Party Parliamentary Group for Events
- Helping to re-establish the APPG for Events and working with its Secretariat and Advisors to create a series of sector specific policy recommendations for the Covid Recovery Commission
- Working with the Tourism Industry Council and Events Industry Board on responses to Recovery Planning. This will ensure the Industry is included both as part of the Visitor Economy Recovery Plan and also has a separate plan tailored to its specific requirements
- Providing regular briefings to officials to highlight the challenge for supply chain business and freelancers and secure long term government support
- Lobbying for support for event organisers not located in rateable premises, in collaboration with other representative bodies across the visitor economy and working with the Local Government Association to ensure guidance reflects inclusion of these businesses
- Providing support and endorsement for the creation of a Climate Action Framework for the events industry
- Working with key partners to launch an industry wide commitment to Diversity, Equality and Inclusivity
- Working on developing a research brief to prepare a report on the state of the Industry post pandemic
- Responding to regular questions from Partners and their members on COVID & Brexit guidance issues and seeking clarification from government Officials via the Cabinet Office
We will continue to work hard to represent our partners and wider industry interests directly to Government, and other stakeholders, as we begin our recovery of the events sector and to ensure that we return to being a strong, valuable and major driver of economic and social change as quickly as possible.