What the Elizabeth Line means for Events Professionals in London
London-based organisers are waiting with baited breath for the introduction of the new Elizabeth line next year. The Crossrail programme is 80 per cent complete and there’s now light at the end of the tunnel! Construction started back in 2012 and while the line will open in 2018, five of the new West-London stations won’t be ready until the following year.
ExCeL London have dubbed the Elizabeth line, the ‘Events Super Highway’ and for good reason. It’s likely to have significant impact on exhibitions across the capital over the coming years, particularly those hosted by ExCeL as the venue becomes increasingly connected – although the direct connection to Heathrow Airport will have to wait until 2019.
So how will these changes impact the people who work in our industry?
More Career Opportunities for Further-Flung Candidates
As of next year, what would have been a fairly nasty commute from the centre of Reading to Custom House will now be a smooth, direct journey lasting just an hour and ten minutes! The Lizzie line will open up industry job opportunities to candidates in further-reaching corners of the capital and beyond. That goes for suppliers and organisers as well as venues.
Smart HR teams and recruitment businesses (like this one) will already be scouting the ‘untapped’ talent about to come into play in the capital.
Earlier Bedtimes… or maybe longer events?
It will simply be much quicker to get to and from a major London venue in 2018 – and the significant time-savings mean more time on-site at your event. Hopefully this goes some way to making an Event Manager or Ops Director’s job that little bit easier!
Whether it’s an earlier night or an extended event programme – how you use this time is up to you. More time in the day is certainly on every event professional’s Christmas list.
More local and international visitors
If you’re responsible for driving visitor numbers or delegate places, it’ll soon be time to start making sure your prospect lists target Elizabeth line destinations in order to take advantage. Sales teams can also use this as a message to generate additional exhibitor revenue too.
Plus, as of 2019, a directly connected Heathrow may also bring the opportunity to attract more overseas business to international events. Perhaps further increasing the demand for ‘hard to find’ foreign-language talent!
Any thoughts on the Elizabeth line and how it might affect you or your business? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.