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78Pink Floral DressVersatile cotton dress with cross over neckline and back ties. Fully lined. Length 39". 100% Cotton. 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18. B4495 £39White Gathered T-shirtSimple empire-line style which is more fl attering for pregnancy than a regular T-shirt. Length 27". 50% Cotton, 50% Modal. S, M, L. B4073 £18Cropped Turn-Up TrousersWith comfortable stretchy under bump jersey waistband and turn-up hem. Inside leg 23". 97% Cotton, 3% Elastane. Navy, Pink. 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18. B4486 £29February 2012 . www.conference-news.co.uk . 11 Intuitive venue search and bookingwith 25,000 venues at home and abroadNEWSEvent management and communications agency, Touch Associates, has offi cially launched into the market. Touch, based in Leatherhead, is a new venture for Patrick Collins, former Owner and Chairman of Universal CIT, Nick Bender, former MD of Grass Roots, Collette Murphy, former Operations Director at UniversalProcon and Mike Ford, former MD of UniversalProcon. The agency will target a range of industry sectors including pharmaceutical, providing venue sourcing, event management, event communications, creative design, event production and strategic meetings consultancy. Colette Murphy said: "Although ourselves and Nick were competitors once upon a time, it is incredible how like-minded we are and I am extremely excited about our future together. "We all bring something different to the table and it is a stroke of great fortune that our strengths compliment each other so strongly." The Touch team say it has already won seven clients and has been running events in both Europe and the rest of the World in the last few months.CNN anchor and TV presenter to speak at Business Travel ShowCNN anchor and TV presenter, Richard Quest, is to present a keynote address at the Business Travel Show (BTS).BTS, for corporate buyers responsible for a travel purse of more than £10.3bn, runs from 7-8 February at Earls Court in London. Quest's address, entitled 'Tales of a Road Warrior', will see him talk about business travel from the traveller's perspective collected during his two decades of globetrotting.Wilson to promote long-term careers at TWCVenue marketing consortium The Westminster Collection (TWC) has appointed Andy Wilson, the Principal of further education college Westminster Kingsway, as Patron of the Collection.Wilson's new role is part of TWC's renewed goals for 2012 onwards, which include an added focus on developing future leaders and professionals through the creation of learning and networking opportunities, as well as through shared industry knowledge and experience.ACC Liverpool's Chief Executive is calling on the Government to bring forward its 2032/33 proposals for improved connectivity between London and the North-West, following news that a high-speed rail line between London and Birmingham (HS2) has been given the thumbs-up.Prattey said: "Since opening in 2008, ACC Liverpool has generated £500m in economic benefi t to the Liverpool City Region, but our transport network is a vital component to attracting new events to our venue and the feedback we continually receive is the perception of our distance from London."Although travel time is now two hours eight minutes, perceptions will not change until this is less than two hours."The 100-mile link and fi rst phase of HS2 would cut the journey time from London to the NEC Birmingham to 50 minutes. ACCL's Prattey voices HS2 concernsTouch event agency is born

NEWS12 . www.conference-news.co.uk . February 2012The latest PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) analysis into corporate insolvency shows that the hospitality and leisure industry is suffering more than most.The sector, the tax and financial advisory group claims, is significantly worse off compared to this time last year with a 30 per cent increase in insolvencies in the last quarter of 2011 compared to the last quarter of 2010. There were 375 insolvencies in the hospitality and leisure sector in the fourth quarter of 2011 (289 in Q4 2010).In 2010, Q4 had seen a drop in insolvencies from Q3 but in 2011, there was a worrying 12 per cent increase.In the hotels sub-sector of hospitality, PwC tracked 38 insolvencies in Q4 2011.David Chubb, PwC Business Recovery Partner and Hospitality and Leisure Specialist, commented: "Q4 would normally be seen as a good time for the sector because of the festive season so it is worrying that we saw a marked increase in the number of insolvencies. Hospitality and leisure was third worst performer for insolvencies, behind only construction and manufacturing.The East Midlands had the biggest increase, percentage wise in Q4 of 2011, while most improvement was recorded in the South East where the number of insolvencies dropped by 21 per cent Q4 2011 over Q3 2011.CHASE 2012 focuses on events and conferencesThe annual Charities and Associations Exhibition (CHASE 2012) will focus on key aspects of the events and conference industry for its 20th anniversary show.CHASE 2012, to be held at London's Business Design Centre on 15-16 February, will feature 48 free seminars for not-for-profi t executives and trustees including fi ve sessions examining event and conference management. Other sessions will focus on social media and new technology, as well as professional development. ISO14001 accreditation for 76 Portland PlaceLondon West End Venue, 76 Portland Place has been awarded the Environmental Management System (EMS) ISO14001 green accreditation.The EMS provides a structured management framework for identifying, evaluating and improving environmental performance.76 Portland Place's Operations Director Kate Meehan said: "It is great to see all the investment we have made over the last few years as a business recognised by this accreditation." EventMobi launches game app to 'educate delegates'Developer EventMobi has launched its GamifyApp into the market. It claims the app is the "world's fi rst smartphone-based platform designed for event professionals that injects entertainment and healthy competition into an event".The app allows planners to build and customise games to enhance the overall attendee experience and solve the common problems such as engaging attendees at educational sessions or compelling attendees to walk the tradeshow and interact with sponsors.Conference and training venue provider etc.venues has announced the opening of its third new venue in 12 months, a 1,858sqm conference and meeting venue in St Paul's, London.The new venue, to open in March 2012, in a landmark City building at 200 Aldersgate boasts the largest conference suite in the etc.venues portfolio, able to hold 400 delegates theatre-style.The announcement follows etc.venues' triple win in the VenueVerdict Awards which gave the group the Number 1 UK Brand Award in the Mid Sized Group category.Two of the company's venues, Maple House in Birmingham and 120 Moorgate in the City of London, achieved the VenueVerdict Gold Standard Accreditation.The St Paul's venue will be the company's tenth venue space in London.Etc.venues opens 3rd venue in 12 monthsHospitality suffers big in insolvenciesIn a re-evaluation of his catering services, the GM of Merlin Events London, Michael Aldridge, has taken the controversial decision to "slash" its list of caterers, which service three venues: Madame Tussauds, SEALIFE London Aquarium and the London Dungeons.Aldridge has questioned the need for having several mid-market caterers on the lists and in a recent blog has asked who it benefi ts. He says he analysed last year's performance by each caterer and discovering what each had 'brought to the party'. While the majority of caterers had reached a 99 per cent customer satisfaction through key performance indicators, some were slow to bring business to the venue.Three caterers were removed from the original list, however, Merlin will not disclose the companies. The new list of caterers are Rhubarb, Payne & Gunter, Dish, Payal Events and kosher caterer Tony Page.Merlin Events London cuts caterer list