Future of meetings



This year, we are incredibly excited to be holding our Hosted Buyer Welcome Reception at London’s Science Museum – one of the most creative event spaces in the capital.

Ahead of the event, we spoke to Jodie Guilford, Event Sales Manager at Science Museum Group, to find out more about their corporate event spaces and what’s in store for attendees of the Hosted Buyer Welcome Reception.





Can you please tell us a little bit about The Science Museum – what spaces do you have available for events, what makes it a unique venue?Jodie Guilford Science Museum

We form part of the world’s leading group of science museums that attract over 5m visitors annually to view our unparalleled collection spanning science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine. As well as providing a truly unique backdrop for events, our bespoke approach to creating stand-out events – from spectacular production to innovative catering and striking theming – sets us apart from others in the sector.

Our most interactive space is Wonderlab: The Statoil Gallery, which provides an immersive event experience for guests to engage, network, learn and have fun. Guests can take the ultimate selfie in the infinity mirror, order experiments at the Chemistry Bar, watch a real life lightning strike before their eyes, and dance on the revolving solar system under a canopy of 500 stars. Wonderlab can accommodate 400 guests for evening receptions and is available for standalone hire or in conjunction with another gallery for a seated dinner.

Welcome Wing Basement is a blank canvas gallery at the heart of the museum, popular for experiential events that break away from traditional formats. The space is perfect for exhibitions, alongside our IMAX theatre, as well as providing a catering space for up to 400 guests.

Another of our spaces, Mathematics: The Winton Gallery (designed by Zaha Hadid Architects) is particularly popular for private dining and intimate receptions. Clients are consistent in their desire for something different that lives long in the memory and this beautiful gallery, which brings mathematical history to life, delivers just that. 

There are a number to choose from at the museum, including the extraordinary Flight gallery, the interactive Atmosphere gallery and futuristic Who Am I? space, as well as the exciting new development of a blank canvas space for 2019; Illuminate.

What are the benefits to meetings and events organisers of holding an event at The Science Museum?

Our ethos of innovation and inspiration reflects in the events we host, as we recognise the power of an inspiring setting and the desire to create memorable experiences. Choosing a venue like the Science Museum, with its strong industry links (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) and aspirational values (innovation, human achievement, inspiring futures) adds a real richness, depth and extra dimension to events projecting a brand ‘story’.

The planning process for events is moving away from being a ‘tick box’ process into something much more consultative. As a unique venue we offer a far more bespoke approach to other, less individualised venues, preferring a tailored method to multiple pre-packaged options. Clients are increasingly looking for a ‘one of a kind’ event experience and for the event to be a seamless extension of their brand, so all of our processes have evolved in response to this. 

With our new Illuminate space available from 2019, clients will benefit from the ability to hold a daytime conference in a dedicated, purpose-built space before hosting an evening event in our unique venue, all under one roof.

Do you have any exciting developments planned for 2018 that you can share? Any big events coming up?

Responding to the ever-increasing demand for an adaptable, high capacity and dedicated daytime space, we’re due to open a brand new, multi-functional events and conference venue – Illuminate - in January 2019. It will enable our clients to host almost any type of event with us – daytime conferences, product launches, exhibitions and awards dinners – using a combination of purpose built, flexible space, and our popular museum galleries.

We have also recently invested in the lighting in our Making the Modern World gallery to enhance the offer for clients, as well as make the offering more affordable.

What can you tell us about your new event space, Illuminate?

Situated on levels four and five of the museum, the space will be available for daytime and evening hire for 400 people for dinners/conferences and 450 for receptions. The directional design of the multi-level space reflects perfectly the concept behind Illuminate’s brand identity; level five is flooded with natural daylight from a panoramic window which offers stunning views and is juxtaposed with level four’s blackout space, which will be ideal for large scale productions.

This new venue is being built in response to the huge demand from companies and associations to hold daytime events at the museum. With such a wide variety of subjects and industries represented with an ethos of innovation and inspiring futures, it’s the ideal platform to host an engaging event or launch a brand.

We spent a great deal of time developing the identity of our new dedicated events space. We wanted to create something that is not only synonymous with the Science Museum Group and our brand values, but that resonates with the forward-thinking events industry. With our ethos of innovation and inspiring futures, Illuminate will be the ideal platform to host engaging, progressive events that encourage new ways of thinking.

What can hosted buyers expect from The Meetings Show’s Welcome Reception being held at The Science Museum?

The Welcome Reception will be held in our Wonderlab gallery, so hosted buyers will be able to explore and enjoy all of the hands-on exhibits spread across seven zones -  including our friction slides! The interactive activities are the ideal ice-breaker for delegates and make way for an exciting and exhilarated atmosphere.

The theme of the reception will be ‘Illuminate’, reflected in the styling, catering and entertainment on the night. We will be giving guests a sneak preview of what will be launched at the show – they can expect a night to remember!


Wonder Lab Science Museum

Why should meetings and events buyers visit your stand at the show in 2018? Do you have any activities planned to take place at the show?

We will be opening the diary for Illuminate bookings at 10am on the first morning of the show. Buyers will have the chance to book the very first event in the brand-new space by coming to our stand as the diary opens!