8th June 2022

CTSI Conference 2022 preview

CTSI makes a long-overdue return to Bristol in June for three days of learning, sharing and reconnecting with colleagues.

By Karin Layton
CTSI Events and Communications Executive

The Institute was last in Bristol more than 130 years ago, in 1890, back when we were still known as the British Association of Inspectors of Weights and Measures. Little did we know when we booked the venue for this year’s Conference that it had been used to host the dinner of our annual meeting all those years ago.

The Mercure Grand Hotel, where Conference takes place from 15-17 June this year, is situated in the heart of Bristol. It is a historic Grade II-listed building which, following a makeover, gained a stylish and distinctive new look in 2018. The hotel’s rejuvenated interior draws inspiration from both the city’s independent art scene and the building’s rich historic past.

The Ballroom, which will play host to the plenaries and masterclasses, and the Wessex Suite, which will welcome our exhibitors, certainly live up to the name of the hotel. Situated on the first floor alongside the seminar rooms and some smaller meeting rooms, we are confident that delegates will be able to familiarise themselves with the venue quickly. There is even a hotel bar and restaurant for all to enjoy.

Bristol is a vibrant, contemporary place steeped in history and we are delighted to be holding our annual event in this wonderful city. Outside the venue, it’s a short walk to the harbourside. The Branch Welcome on Wednesday night will be held in the Harbour House, the perfect setting for this informal networking opportunity.

There is lots to see and do, from visiting the Clifton Suspension Bridge or a walk along the banks of the Avon to heritage sites like Bristol Cathedral and the Lord Mayor’s Chapel. Eateries are in abundance; if you venture to the harbour on the South Bank you will find Cargo, a cluster of small restaurants in shipping containers offering boutique food; for a more eclectic choice head to the Stokes Croft area for fantastic, inexpensive food from small independent venues. Closer to the Mercure Grand you will find a wide range of chains and independent outlets.

Down to business

The theme for this year’s event, ‘A Changing Profession for a Changing World’, is appropriate – the topics under discussion 130 years ago included ‘the stamping of milk churns and barrels’. Fast-forward to the present day, and the main platform will see us learn how to support business innovation that protects consumers, how we can build consumer confidence via regulatory innovation together, and insights into protecting consumers in a global marketplace.

Our plenaries and masterclasses include speakers from Government, the profession and key UK and international stakeholders. Alongside these, our programme features a range of seminars including the CTSI Race and Equalities Working Group, an ACTSO apprenticeship session as well as some of our regular session holders.

New and old friends

We are looking forward to welcoming some fantastic new exhibitors this year, including the Natural Diamond Council and Brand Solution; our tabletop exhibition remains a cost-effective way of delivering the event free of charge to members and the contribution that our exhibitors, session holders and sponsors make to the event remains invaluable.

Status International, a leading independent supplier of lighting and electrical accessories, joins us again as our main sponsor and will host the popular Awards Dinner on Thursday evening – have you booked your ticket?

We are thrilled that Civica, a global digital solutions provider, will sponsor the Welcome Drinks on the Wednesday; everyone is welcome so don’t miss out.

Finally, huge thanks to trueCall, a UK-based call monitoring service, which continues to be the sponsor of the notepads that you all find so useful for those all-important notes.

With Friday in mind, we have scheduled a programme to tackle some local priorities. We have speakers from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Animal and Plant Health Agency. There will also be sessions focusing on housing, capably facilitated by our Property Lead Officers, with speakers from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, Propertymark and the redress schemes. These are aimed at all enforcement officers, together with agents affected by recent and planned changes to legislation.

Have you registered? This one is not to be missed!

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