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  • Susan Barber, MBA, CAE, CMP & Karen Hill, MBA, DES

World Council of Enterostomal Therapists®—Site Visit: Glasgow and Edinburgh, Scotland

World Council of Enterostomal Therapists® (WCET®) holds a biennial congress on even years, bringing together globally renowned speakers and presenters, nurse specialists in the field, and corporate sponsors who display and greet guests on the exhibition floor and give presentations in smaller symposium formats. Because WCET® is a global association, the congresses move from continent to continent to enable as many members as possible to attend. 

 

In 2024, the congress will be held in Glasgow, Scotland. It had been scheduled originally for 2020 but had to be postponed because of the global COVID-19 pandemic. The arrangements had been made in 2019 by the previous management company and the previous congress coordinator. 

 

The Barcami Lane team members on the WCET® account are Susan Barber, Executive Director; Karen Hill, Meeting Planner; and Melissa Striharsky, Coordinator. Because the arrangements had previously been made, the Barcami Lane team had not had the opportunity to engage in a site visit. It was determined that it was essential that we do so in order to see the entire event as an Executive Board member or a delegate or speaker would see it, including not only the venues but also the methods of travel in and around Glasgow and Edinburgh. 

 

Glasgow Convention Bureau The Glasgow Convention Bureau (Glasgow Convention Bureau) has been supportive, informative and very helpful throughout the process. The team made hotel reservations for us, made appointments at the reception venues, made appointments with the team at the convention center, and hired a driver to get us from place to place. They provided a detailed agenda for the 4 days that we were in Glasgow. 


Mid-week, we had a meeting with the team who delved into the mission of the association and the goals of the congress. They know the area, of course, and know the people at various medical centers and hospitals and made recommendations as to who could provide relevant and important educational presentations. They even knew where to go for pig trotters for the debridement. Their follow up was timely and thorough. 

 

Travel including Flight and Local Transportation – Edinburgh to Glasgow Because the EB meeting will be in Edinburgh prior to the Congress, we flew into Edinburg (direct non-stop from Boston). There we were met by the congress coordinator, Alison Crawshaw, who is a life-long resident of Edinburgh. We took the tram to Haymarket station where we got on the train to Glasgow. In Glasgow train station, we were met by Laura Mackay and our driver Steven who took us to the first venue where our reception for approximately 800 people will be. 

 

Venues – Receptions Platform: We were met by the director of Platform for a tour of the venue. This was followed by a tasting of food that the executive chef prepared specifically for us. It included many options, not all of which we would choose, but from which we would be choosing for our guests. It was a remarkable display and certainly eased our minds as we move forward with the planning of this event in this very unusual space. 

Science Center: The Glasgow Convention Bureau will be hosting a reception for our guests on one of the evenings. We were met by the executive director of the Glasgow Science Center who gave us a tour of the 3-story center, filled with interactive displays. It is a short walk across the river Clyde from the convention center and many of the hotels in the area. 

 

Venues – Exhibit Hall and Breakout Sessions The Scottish Event Campus (SEC): The SEC is a massive complex that offers multiple exhibition hall spaces as well as breakout meeting spaces and a restaurant. We toured the exhibit halls and determined which space would be most appropriate for our needs. We also toured the meeting room spaces. We would not have been able to do this with confidence without seeing them. 

 

Hotels – Site Visits (x12) In addition to seeing the hotel that we stayed in, we had site visits at 10 other hotels in one day. Our morning hotels were within a small walking radius. The afternoon hotels were spread out and our driver Steven was able to take us easily to each. Each hotel was different, so we had quite a lot of exposure to the benefits of each. All of these appointments were set up by the Glasgow Convention Bureau. We were able to prioritize several and de-prioritize several, leaving us with about 6 that we will be discussing. 

 

Sightseeing and Things to Do We took the City Sightseeing Glasgow Hop-On Hop-Off bus tour, tickets provided by the Glasgow Convention Bureau. This took about an hour and drove all around the City Centre area, the university area, and the Glasgow Finnieston area. It is very informative and provides a lot of history of the area. We sampled several restaurants in the City Centre and Finnieston. 

 

Green Initiatives and LEZ Sustainable Glasgow proposes reducing the city’s carbon missions through improved energy management and the development of new integrated low carbon energy systems for the city. The initiative is pervasive throughout the city and includes efforts at hotels and venues to implement and practice climate-friendly policies. The city is a Low Emissions Zone (LEZ) and cars that do not comply, primarily due to age, will be ticketed. The city strongly encourages walking and bicycling. 

 

Edinburgh At the end of our appointments in Glasgow, we took the train back to Edinburgh. The Executive Board will spend up to 3 days in Edinburgh for an in-person meeting and strategy session. This will take place at Kimpton, which we toured to see the meeting space and sleeping rooms.

 

Results This trip was highly successful in that we saw all the venues for receptions, exhibits, meeting rooms; we sampled food offerings; and we viewed many hotels that might be (or might not be) appropriate for our guests. We traveled on the trains, trams and buses, just as our guests would be doing. We deepened our relationship with the team at the Glasgow Convention Centre, who are invaluable in their connections and knowledge of the area and the general populace. BL

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