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Leeds to host the first ever Creative Cities Convention

A spotlight shines on Leeds’ creative sector as it is chosen to host the very first Creative Cities Convention

ConferenceLeeds is celebrating Leeds’ thriving creative and digital sector, the fastest growing in the UK, as the city is chosen to host the first-ever Creative Cities Convention. The conference offers a brand new meeting place for creative media professionals across the UK and will be taking place from the 25th – 26th of April at the Leeds College of Music, and includes sponsorships from the BBC and Channel 4.

The event, which will bring together 200 delegates, will be hosted by broadcaster and journalist Kirsty Wark and will provide a platform for anyone interested in media, content creation and growth across the country. Many industry leaders and commentators will be in attendance, including Sir Peter Bazalgette, executive chairman of ITV, to celebrate the richness and diversity of talent and the growth of global production across the UK. The convention will also touch upon Leeds’ campaign to home Channel 4, with strong support from the sector for the #4sparks campaign from established industries such as Screen Yorkshire and true North.

ConferenceLeeds worked closely with the organisers by assisting with the initial searching for venues and arranged multiple site visits to ensure the most fitting space was chosen. The organisers wanted a venue that offered a suitable performance space and seated hundreds of delegates, making Leeds College of Music an ideal space. It has recently undergone a revamp of its main performance space, The Venue, by adding a striking rooftop extension which now offers increased capacity. ConferenceLeeds’ service did not end here and they are now in the process of creating a digital room booking service to ensure the delegates attending have a seamless experience when choosing their accommodation.

Ruth Pitt, Director of the Creative Cities Convention, comments: “The Creative Cities Convention is the new forum for the UK television industry to debate the hot topics around content production and distribution. There couldn’t be a better time for the convention, with issues of equality and representation right at the forefront of public discourse.

In our inaugural year we’re in Leeds, the geographical heart of the UK. It’s an ideal place to bring together creative media people from across the country to discuss the issues affecting them. This includes how the government’s new Industrial Strategy might benefit the creative industries outside London and also how Channel 4’s plan to move hundreds of jobs across the nation can benefit the industry and our audiences creatively, culturally and commercially.

We have secured a fantastic line up of speakers from across the industry and we’re looking forward to welcoming them to the wonderful surroundings of the refurbished Leeds College of Music.”

Jennifer Young, Head of ConferenceLeeds, commented: “We are delighted that Leeds has been chosen to host the very first Creative Cities Convention this April. The city is already home to the BBC Yorkshire and ITV’s Leeds Studios, and is an established digital hub with over 3,500 digital and technology companies located here. It is one of the fastest growing cities in the digital, film and TV sector currently and not only this, Leeds is now a hub for young, diverse digital and creative talent and it is hoped this convention will only strengthen this.

Finally, this new convention further highlights the Leeds City Region as being a creative powerhouse outside of London, helping to lead the way for innovation in the creative and digital industries in Yorkshire and beyond.”