Event Management Company - Manchester.      Serving clients across the UK      |      0161 428 1115      |      enquiries@assuredevents.com

Client: British Universities Finance Directors’ Group (BUFDG)
Event: Gala Dinner 2015

Objective/brief:
To create a memorable and enjoyable gala dinner for 260 University Finance Directors, sponsors and commercial partners and to encourage everyone to mix.

 

Particular challenge:
A major challenge was to take a very generic venue on a University campus and give it a special feel for a group of senior ranking directors and sponsors, without being too ostentatious. The dinner is also the key social event within the BUFDG annual conference and so expectations were high!

 

 

How did we meet the objectives and overcome challenges:

The venue we used was a theatre and arts building which was essentially a long and slightly narrow blank canvas with an integral stage area at one end.

The evening started with a drinks reception held outside the main room, where we provided a neon bar, roaming drinks, a close up conjurer and a digital caricaturist.

We dressed the main room with floor-to-ceiling black-out material. Deciding not to use the integral stage, we instead created a new one along one of the long edges to increase visibility. Throughout the course of the evening, photographs taken from the previous two days of the conference were shown on screens along with sponsor logos. Tables were spot-lit from above and had ice features as centre-pieces that slowly melted over the course of the evening.

The seating plan alternated Finance Directors with sponsors and commercial partners so the groups all mixed well. After the main course, the Finance Directors moved two seats to the left to encourage conversation amongst as many people as possible.

The theme of the event was ‘Learning from the past. Looking to the future’. The choice of after dinner speaker was critical. We settled on the hugely inspirational Martine Wright, who lost both legs in the London terrorist attack on 7th July 2005. She shared her story of recovery and her elation at being selected for the Team GB ladies’ sitting Paralympic volleyball team and then competing in the London Olympics.

Outcome.

92% scored the dinner as good or excellent, and Assured Events organisation of it scored 98%.

We are already in liaison with a venue for next year’s gala dinner.

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“Overall a very enjoyable and valuable opportunity. The organisation in advance and facilitation whilst we were there was excellent.”

“Keep it up - gets better every year! Well done and thanks.”

“Another great event and highlight of the year!!”

“A thoroughly enjoyable evening, well done to the Assured Events Team - they did a brilliant job.”

All of the above are quotes from attending Finance Directors.

 

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