Olympic gain for London Show venue

Earls Court – home of the ATEI, ICE and ICEi exhibitions (22-24 January 2008) – has gained Olympic status, as the venue is set to play a key role during the 2012 Olympics. An agreement between Earls Court & Olympia Venues and the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (LOCOG) will see the volleyball competition being staged at Earls Court during the London Games.

The agreement has been cited, alongside confirmation of a number of long-term contracts with exhibition organisers, as guaranteeing a commitment to EC&O Venues’ future as operator of London’s premier event venues. “The company is laying foundations for that future,” commented a spokesperson, “by starting work on a GBP 1m-plus project to build a new access ramp for cars and light vans directly into the Level 2 space of Earls Court 1, making it more accessible and easier to use.”

Karen Cooke, head of exhibitions for London Show organisers Clarion ATE, commented: “We are delighted to hear of further investment and improvements to our Earls Court home. Earls Court is the ideal venue for staging the London Show and we welcome its ongoing commitment to event organisers.”

Cooke added: “The agreement with LOCOG also serves to quash rumours of any change of the venue’s purpose, which have been circulating for nearly two years. Whilst EC&O Venues have made no secret of the fact that its business is for sale at the right price, the major shareholders have affirmed their vision for establishing the venues as leisure destinations centred around the core business of exhibitions, conferences and special events for a long time to come.”