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page 20 . January 2012 . 9In the current economic climate, it can be diffi cult for organisations to fi nd conference venues that offer quality accommodation and facilities but which aren't prohibitively expensive. This is a particular challenge for organisations working in the not-for-profi t sector. Event organisers can be forced to choose between venues that offer genuine quality, and those that are merely affordable.Academic venues fi ll this void, since they are able to offer accommodation and locations for conferences at rates that are very competitive, especially when compared to those of most private conferencing centres and major hotel chains. More importantly, they can offer a great range of Academic choiceHow do you fi nd an affordable, effective venue? Academic venue consortium Venumasters gives some money saving venue tipsfacilities, since they have access to numerous meeting rooms, conference halls and sports halls perfectly suited to the requirements of either small or large-scale events, often with facilities like tiered lecture theatres that are rarely found in hotels. UK Universities offer serious benefi ts for charity and association event organisers:a) Economic pricingb) A high proportion of single-status accommodation, ideally suited to business meetingsc) A single point of contact for administration matters (far simpler than dealing with hotels spread across the hinterland)d) Enhanced networking opportunities with delegates centrally-based on campusIn addition, most academic venues have excellent transport links providing easy access to major conurbations, not to mention local amenities and attractions.The other great advantage of academic venues is the sheer number of them. Most cities and major towns have venues that can offer great facilities without costing too much. To help you choose the right location for your conference, Venuemasters, itself a not-for-profi t membership organisation, represents 90 of the leading academic venues nationwide, and offers a venue searching facility. Academic venues can offer great facilities and at competitive prices

London's Ultimate Destination for Business & Sport. Meeting rooms for 20 - 850 people, including The Live Room, our tiered auditorium. Call +44 (0) 20 8744 9997 for a personal guided tour. www.twickenhamexperience.comCREAEDWITH YOU IN MINDCONFERENCES AND EVENTSPhotography © Arup Giles Richoll Photography