Eastwood Hall: Back to Business, A Case Study

24/03/21

Eastwood Hall is a contemporary event and conference venue in Nottinghamshire with 36 modern and stylish spaces, which are ideal for hosting meetings, training, weddings, parties and more. They can accommodate large and small events, with room in the event suites for eight to 400 guests. Set in 26 acres of beautiful grounds the venue naturally lends itself to outdoor activities including team building and celebrations.

Eastwood Hall re-opened in July 2020, and since then it has been host to many Covid secure training sessions and company meetings.

“Despite restrictions, organisations still had the need to regularly bring their teams together face to face. Many have moved their meetings to us because their old venue was either closed or couldn’t operate in a Covid secure manner,” explains Lorraine Lockwood, Regional General Manager. “We have the strength that comes from being part of Compass Group, but the agility and flexibility of a smaller business. We worked with our clients to find a way to accommodate their needs, adapting our offering as the new rules were announced and always putting the safety of our clients and staff at the heart of everything we did. We followed the Group’s ‘Stay Safe, Feel Safe’ Covid Secure Standards Charter – which is a six-point charter committed to reassuring organisers and keeping everyone safe.”

The team has adapted the food available and the way it is served; more ‘grab and go’ options are now offered to guests to take back to their rooms, buffet meals are plated up and screen guards have been installed at counters. Restaurant seating and bar service areas have been adapted to enable each delegate to have lots of space and keep a safe distance from others.

“Our clients held team communication days and essential training sessions. We have lots of space both indoors and outdoors, so we adapted our rooms and hosted small Covid secure meetings for up to 30 people in rooms that would normally accommodate 200 delegates.”

Eastwood Hall is a popular venue for social occasions and a great leisure break destination. During 2020 they were able to host a number of Covid secure weddings and celebration of life services. “Our leisure customers were equally impressed by our ability to adapt to the changing rules and to accommodate their needs.”

A regular and thorough cleaning regime has also reassured customers. The team uses recognised cleaning products and antibacterial cleaners used by the NHS and they have increased the frequency of cleaning, paying close attention to high contact areas such as door handles, handrails and card readers. Hygiene stations with hand sanitisers have been placed around the venue for customers and colleagues to use and the team actively reminds everyone to continually practice safe hygiene measures. For extra safety, any colleagues working in close proximity to one another and our guests must wear personal protective equipment.

Keeping social distancing in place during an event is paramount to the Eastwood Hall team. The venue now has a one-way flow system and signage across the venue to help guests keep a safe distance from others. The team works with organisers to prevent congestion and to suggest options such as staggered arrival/departure times and catering breaks to make sure they don’t get too busy. When Nottinghamshire moved into Tier Four towards the end of 2020 the team closed the venue in line with government restrictions.

“We are offering our customers an extra 25% more space at no extra charge,” says Lorraine. “We have 36 flexible event spaces that allow for the many configurations that we have created in line with our social distancing guidelines. We have been strict at following our Covid procedures and our clients have told us that this has made them feel very safe at our venue.”

Did you know?

The Venues Collection team was the first venue team in the UK, to work with Public Health England and the World Health Organisation to repatriate British citizens and their families, after being flown from Wuhan City in China, the epicentre of the outbreak of Coronavirus. All guests tested negative for the Coronavirus, however, the experience has led the way for working in these unprecedented times and all the considerations that go with it.

Lorraine Lockwood, Regional General Manager, Eastwood Hall, Sedgebrook Hall, Kettering Conference & Exhibition Centre

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