You can now book your spot for the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) 56th annual conference on January 23-26, 2022. The conference, which will include talks, industry updates, and opportunities to socialize, takes place at the Mercure Blackburn Dunkenhalgh Hotel and Spa in Lancashire.
GCA Chief Executive, Iain Wylie, said: “As this is the grand return of our annual conference - our last was held in 2020 as last year’s had to be cancelled due to Covid - we wanted to let people know booking for the event is now open, so, if you are hoping to attend, please visit the members’ section of our website to reserve your place."
The Mercure Blackburn Dunkenhalgh Hotel and Spa
“To book, please visit the members’ section of our website via www.gca.org.uk. Sponsorship slots have been filling up too, but there are still some limited places left, so if any companies are interested in this, I recommend getting in touch quickly by calling.”
The conference kicks off on Sunday, January 23 with a chance to tour and visit the new RHS Bridgewater Garden, as well as both Bents and Barton Grange garden centers, before an evening of fundraising activities and friendly competition for the charity Greenfingers, where teams will battle it out for the Greenfingers Challenge Cup.
Spaces are strictly limited for the tour and visit and fill up quickly. When this is fully booked, attendees can still book for the Greenfingers Charity event at the Flower Bowl entertainment venue. Transport is available from the hotel directly to the Flower Bowl and back.
Iain adds: “Monday’s (January 24) part of the conference will focus on the operational side of our industry and will include presentations from our inspectors around best practice in our industry, plus talks from a range of inspiring and engaging business speakers to help motivate us for the year ahead. In the evening, our eagerly anticipated fancy-dress Associates Dinner, which is themed as ‘The Great GCA Garden Party’, will take place.
“During the day on Tuesday (January 25) there will be more of a focus on the strategic element of the business, with opportunities to listen to some inspirational speakers and a chance to help attendees define their strategy for 2022 and beyond. Topics covered include the economy, leadership, and business development with a particular emphasis on the environment and sustainability.
“There will also be our Associate’s Exhibition providing the chance to meet suppliers in an informal setting before concluding in the evening with our annual black-tie gala dinner and our awards ceremony.”
The conference pages on the website will be updated with speaker announcements and full listings as the program develops and exact timings are confirmed. There is also a dedicated email for any queries you may have: firstname.lastname@example.org.