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Ed’s back: Labour Party conference expected to bring £24million boost to Manchester economy

By Pippa Field

The Labour Party’s annual conference returns to Manchester this weekend, bringing with it a predicted £24million boost to the city’s economy.

Labour leader Ed Miliband is among the 11,000 politicians, delegates and exhibitors who will convene for the five day political summit at Manchester Central convention centre.

Organisers are forecasting that the local economy will receive a boost with millions of pounds set to be spent in the city’s hotels, restaurants and bars.

Andrew Stokes, chief executive of Marketing Manchester, the agency that was behind the bid to bring the conference to the city, said: “Party conferences are perhaps the most visible example of the national association aspect of our business tourism industry.

“This sector accounts for 11% of our conference business and contributes £139million to the local economy throughout the year.’

This year marks the fourth time that Labour’s annual debate has visited the city since 2006, making it a firm fixture on the UK’s party conference circuit.

Labour also has a strong footing in Greater Manchester with eight of the 11 boroughs currently Labour.

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchster City Council, said: “Manchester is now the major conference destination for the two main political parties and we’re pleased that Labour has chosen to return to our great city.

“Manchester is going to be on show to the world during the five days of the conference-and we won’t disappoint.”

Labour’s National Women’s Conference will take place the day before the main event, with over 500 fringe events taking place throughout the five days-many at the official conference hotel The Midland.

Angie Robinson, chief executive of Manchester Central, said: “Manchester Central is delighted to welcome the Labour Party back to the venue for this year’s conference.

“We’re well versed in hosting conferences on this scale and our team are always thrilled to be a part of such a high-profile event.”

Fringe events, taking the form of individual events such as training sessions, seminars, debates and workshops, allow visitors to discuss and debate issues surrounding the Labour Party.

The conference runs from Sunday September 30 to Thursday October 4.

Picture courtesy of Bob Peter’s Photography UK, with thanks.

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