There were numerous highlights during the two day event held at Loughborough’s Holywell Park from 22nd – 23rd September.
Most notable were an opening address from Jo Bamford, JCB’s managing director of global accounts to a packed out theatre; a motivational talk from TV celebrity and DIY expert Craig Phillips as part of the Future Hirers’ initiative; private meetings held by HAE EHA members and supporters; Hire Station, Hewdens, Brandon Hire and the Access Industry Forum; an outdoor demonstration area; various opportunities to network and several well attended keynote sessions.
Speaking after his presentation, James Sutton of Raleigh International said: “Thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak at your conference. I thought the ‘Navigating Your Future’ theme was extremely relevant, based on my conversations with attendees at the event. Clearly a lot of hard work had gone in to the Convention, and it seemed to be a huge success.”
This sentiment was reiterated by many of the 395 delegates in attendance, who have had nothing but praise for the event, including Andy Connor, Speedy Hire’s supply chain director who commented: “From my point of view I thoroughly enjoyed the [Hire Convention] and can only say that all aspects of it were well organised, the location was perfect and the atmosphere was relaxed so I had time to talk to all suppliers and attend some of the seminars. This was my first HAE event but it definitely won’t be my last and I will be recommending it to my colleagues as a truly worthwhile event to attend.”
Exhibitor feedback was also encouraging Phil Winnington, managing director, Morris Site Machinery said: “Congratulations to the HAE team on an excellent Hire Convention both on behalf of Morris Site Machinery and personally as an enthusiastic ‘HAE Supplier Board’ member. The work that was put into the two day event was substantial, visitor numbers were encouraging, especially the first day and significantly better than 2014. Quality over quantity and a job to do to encourage more independents next year.”
The Hire Convention also held the HAE EHA’s first ever Future Hirers’ Workshop, as part of the association’s ongoing Future Hirer initiative. Backed by the CITB, it is encouraging 18-30 year olds looking for work or a change of career to consider the hire sector. As well as the keynote session from Craig Phillips, the workshops, heavily supported by the DWP proved to be a popular addition to the programme.
Graham Arundell, HAE EHA’s managing director concludes: “This year’s Hire Convention surpassed all expectations in terms of both the quality and quantity of the number of delegates, this was due to the impressive exhibitor list, a fantastic conference programme and tremendous support from our membership. The response from exhibitors, speakers and delegates has been extremely encouraging and plans for the 2016 event are already underway.”
The Hire Convention will return to Holywell Park in 2016 from 21st – 22nd September.