The Liberal Democrats will hold their 2018 conference in Brighton, bringing in an estimated £10 million to the city.
The party held the annual event in the city last year, and has booked the Brighton Centre again for its 5,000-delegate conference in September 2018.
Lydia Dumont, head of conferences at the Liberal Democrats, said: “Our decision to go back to Brighton was based on the positive feedback received from delegates who attended our Autumn Conference in 2016. The city is a preferred destination for our members because it has so much to offer outside of conference and this just adds to the whole delegate experience.
“Brighton is an exciting and vibrant city with all venues situated close to the city centre and local amenities which offers delegates variety and flexibility throughout conference.
“The space at the Brighton Centre is ideal for onsite registration which sometimes has to take place at a different venue in other cities. The Lib Dem conference team particularly enjoy working with the Brighton Centre staff who are extremely helpful, professional and flexible”.
The deal was secured by Brighton and Hove City Council’s tourism arm, VisitBrighton Convention Bureau, which will act as the sole accommodation partner for the event. This means all attendees and exhibitors will book their accommodation through VisitBrighton’s on-line booking system. For the conference, the VisitBrighton team has negotiated preferential rates and held room allocations at a range of VisitBrighton accommodation partners including the Old Ship Hotel, Mercure Brighton Seafront, Queens Hotel, Gullivers Hotel and the Hilton Brighton Metropole.
Howard Barden, Brighton and Hove City Council’s head of tourism and venues, said: “We’re delighted to be welcoming back the Lib Dems and thrilled they’ve chosen to use our accommodation booking service which we know can take out the leg-work and uncertainty of finding accommodation across the city.”
Alan Robins, chair of the council’s economic development and culture committee, said: “Conferences of this size are great for local businesses, drawing in extra visitors to boost trade at times of the year that are often quieter. A political conference also generates media coverage and puts our city on the map of destinations capable of hosting large scale events.”