As I landed on a beautiful sunny day at Glasgow airport on the 9th of March I was excited to see the final arrangements for the IFOMPT 2016 conference fitting into place.
The team , lead by a tireless Chris Mercer, have been working behind the scene to ensure the delegates get a world class conference experience as soon as they walk off the plane in Glasgow.
The taxi driver drove me straight to the Crowne Plaza Hotel which is adjacent to the SECC and is our base throughout the conference. The hotel has been recently refurbished and I was given a room on the 12 floor overlooking the SECC and River Clyde.
A quick walk around the area confirmed that there has been a lot of development since we were last in Glasgow. The Hydro centre is now open, standing next to the SECC and attracting world class music and sporting events. We hope to keep delegates informed of possible events in the Hydro around the time of the conference so that delegates can maximise their experience while in the city.
There are also numerous running routes from the SECC and as I am currently training for two marathons and an Ultra I pulled on my daps and set out on a scenic 5k route down the Clyde and back via the Glasgow Science Centre. I had also promised Roger Kerry, one of our keynotes and a fellow runner, that I would find some good routes for early morning pre-conference runs. From the SECC it is an easy walk or run down the River Clyde toward the city centre and many of Glasgow’s hotels. Delegates can enjoy the ease of getting around Glasgow either by foot, train, bus or the numerous taxis in the city.
The next day my partner is crime, Chris Mercer, arrived. He, like me, was excited about seeing the conference venue again and going step by step through the delegate experience.
A catch up with the team at MCI, and the rest of the organising committee and we were off round the venue.
I am still impressed each time I walk into the Clyde Auditorium where our keynotes and invited speakers will be taking the stage. The acoustics are impressive and each seat provides an excellent view of the speakers. The wifi capabilities at the conference is sufficient for over 3000 delegates so the team are happy that all the conference app features will be in place to make this conference truly interactive.
After the morning run and an early start, the best part of the day was the conference food tasting. At previous conferences I have always been let down by the conference food provided. The team at SECC did not disappoint. Their award winning conference menu was exceptional and at a restaurant standard. I will look forward to each conference lunch knowing that all the delegates dietary requirements will be well met.
Last visit of the day was to Glasgow Caledonian University , which is the venue for the pre and post conference courses. The facilities at the university are excellent and both the staff and students are excited to be a part of IFOMPT 2016. You will get the chance to meet some of the students as they volunteer as conference helpers throughout IFOMPT and we would like to thanks Kay Keir and her team for all the help they have given the conference. They have made us truly welcome at their University.
As I finish this blog I leave you with one piece of advice : Don’t miss the chance to join us in Glasgow in July. We promise we will try and make IFOMPT