The 2020 Cultural Enterprises Conference and Trade Show has been cancelled.
This Conference was set to be our biggest and best ever, with record attendance. We’re really looking forward to bouncing back in 2021, with your support – and we’ll be inviting many of our 2020 speakers back to speak again in 2021.
As the situation regarding Coronavirus worsened, we continually risk-assessed the event.
Given the UK’s move to the ‘delay’ phase of Coronavirus on Thursday 12 March, whatever the public health advice, delegates and exhibitors could not have reasonably had confidence that the event was safe to attend. In a very short space of time, many participants contacted us to ask us to consider cancelling the event.
A large number of speakers pulled out due to their employers restricting travel – this left us unable to deliver the promised conference programme.
These circumstances were outside of our reasonable control.
You should consider the option to re-book for the 2021 Conference.
If this isn’t possible, please contact us, providing evidence of the serious financial hardship which will be caused, and we will look at each case individually.
Will I get a refund?
It is a matter of great regret that for many people coming to the conference, it will not be possible to cancel travel and accommodation arrangements – though we hope that by arranging to reschedule to a similar date in the same town next year, you may be able to negotiate to re-book.
The Association itself, a small educational charity, will incur significant costs – the timing, forcing a ‘last minute’ cancellation after large amounts of expenditure has already been committed, is very difficult.
Our insurers, a major provider of insurance to event organisers, have confirmed that Coronavirus is not covered by their policy – we will receive no insurance compensation.
The terms and conditions of booking for both delegates and exhibitors state that:
“The Company [i.e. Cultural Enterprises Trading Ltd, the organisers of the Conference] shall be entitled to terminate the Agreement without liability (or obligation to refund the Fees)… if… the Company is unable to hold the Event as planned due to an event outside of its reasonable control.”Terms and conditions: Delegates | Exhibitors
This cancellation was outside of our reasonable control, meaning that we are not liable to refund fees – but we want to do better than ‘no refunds’.
We anticipate that we will have to access our reserve funds as a result of the position we are adopting, but we want to ensure that wherever possible, “you’re OK, and we’re OK”.
Given the scale of the disruption caused at the last minute, we are facing losses ourselves – we cannot guarantee to cover 100% of your losses arising from the cancellation.
We are offering three options – please choose an option by 5pm on Friday 1 May 2020.
Option 1 – Re-book on to the 2021 Trade Show, 10-11 March in Harrogate (set up on 9 March)
You can opt not to request a refund, and choose to reschedule, attending instead in 2021.
We will automatically re-book you on to the 2021 Trade Show.
If you booked at an Associate member rate, provided you do not cancel or downgrade your membership by 11 March 2021, your stand will be transferred at no additional cost to you (unless you choose to upgrade to a larger stand).
Pickard’s, the shell scheme provider, will do the same. We will let them know you are re-booking.
We guarantee that you can have the same stand that you booked this year – however before priority booking opens, we will tell you which stands have become available during the year. If you wish, you can request a transfer to another stand of the same or greater value (at additional cost, first come, first served).
If you purchased advertising, this will transfer to the 2021 Trade Show.
If you booked for the Gala Dinner, we’re really sorry but due to the nature of the catering agreement, this is non-transferable and non-refundable. We will ask you nearer the time if you would like to book again for the 2021 Gala Dinner.
Option 2 – Claim a refund
You can request a refund for your booking.
We will deduct a 50% charge to cover costs.
If you had a separate transaction with Pickard’s, they will also deduct 50% from any fees paid to them, to cover costs. To claim your refund from Pickard’s, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
As in option 1, we regret that the Gala Dinner is non-transferable and non-refundable.
What if the 50% charge will cause me serious financial hardship?
We want to achieve the best result for everyone, in difficult circumstances. You should consider the option to re-book for the 2021 Conference. If this isn’t possible, please contact us, providing evidence of the serious financial hardship which will be caused, and we will look at each case individually.
Option 3 – Gift your booking(s)
Like many organisations in the sector, the Association will have to pay significant costs arising from the Coronavirus pandemic. If your organisation is in a position to, you can choose to waive your refund and opportunity to re-book, supporting the Association by allowing us to treat your conference fee as a donation / gift. We appreciate your support.
If we don’t hear from you by 5pm on Friday 1 May 2020, we will assume you have chosen option 1.
Can I have a copy of the delegate mailing list?
Our members and delegates have long been clear that they do not want their contact details shared in this way, and in any event GDPR and UK data protection regulations prevent this.
However, we are keen to highlight your products and services to our delegates and the wider Association for Cultural Enterprises membership (a mailing list of more than 4,500 people).
We are proposing to create an email which will showcase our conference exhibitors, and send this to our database in the next few weeks. If you would like to be included, please send us:
- Two paragraphs (of no more than 250 words total) of promotional text
- Up to two images (we cannot guarantee to use both)
- A website link
- Your preferred contact details (email / phone only please)
Please email the above to email@example.com