Belfast chosen to host major nursing congress

5th Jun, 2015

Belfast has been chosen to host the 2018 Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Annual Congress, the first time it will be held in the city.

The congress, which will be held over five days in May 2018 is the largest event secured to date for the Belfast Waterfront Conference and Exhibition Centre, which will open its £29.5m extension next year. The redevelopment, funded by Belfast City Council, Tourism NI and the European Regional Development Fund, through the European Sustainable Competitiveness Programme for Northern Ireland, will add a further 4,000m² of flexible exhibition and meeting space, doubling the size of the current facilities on offer.

The RCN is the largest union and professional body for the nursing profession in the United Kingdom. Representing over 420,000 members, including nurses, midwifes, healthcare workers and students, the annual congress is the Association’s flagship debating forum and helps to inform the RCN's policies and work for the coming year.

In addition to the congress which includes the UK’s largest exhibition of nursing products and services, around 100 meetings and social events will take place in a number of venues across the city. The five day conference is expected to welcome more than 5,000 delegates to Belfast.

Visit Belfast worked in partnership with Belfast Waterfront to secure the event for Belfast.

Rachael McGuickin, Director of Business Tourism, Visit Belfast, said: “Belfast has a strong track record in winning and delivering national and international conferences, but the increased capacity at Belfast Waterfront enables us to attract major, city-wide events like the RCN Congress to Belfast that would have previously been out of reach.This is a fantastic win for the city and it further increases our profile as one of the fastest-growing conference cities in the UK and Ireland. We look forward to working with the RCN team and our tourism and hospitality industry to deliver a world-class congress in 2018.”

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