Play & Attractions is the new name for the family entertainment sector of Leisure Industry Week (LIW) in the UK, and it all kicks on September 21.
Supported by BALPPA (British Association of Leisure Parks, Piers and Attractions), NFAN (National Farm Attractions Network), HCA (Holiday Centre Association) and the PPA (Play Providers Association), Play & Attractions will bring together operators of amusement parks, farm parks, play centres, bowling alleys, museums and other family attractions. Many of these facilities benefited in 2009 from the stay at home holiday trend, with visits to theme parks up by more than 3%.
The exhibition is one of seven “shows within a show” at LIW, alongside Health & Fitness, Leisure Facilities, Sport, Pool & Spa, Eat & Drink and Licensed Business. In total there will be around 320 exhibitors.
Arihant Industrial Corporation, Directional Data Systems, Gravitron, House of Play, Innovative Leisure, Laser Force International, Omniticket Network, Playbus Company, SPI Play, Taylor Made Equipment, Veqtor and Vision XS are just a few of the names taking part. There is also reported to be growing interest from the coin-op sector, with companies such as SAM Leisure, RLMS Sales, Harry Levy Amusements and Electrocoin taking stands within the new Coin-Op Showcase.
A new feature this year at Play & Attractions will be the Play Innovation Zone, staged in association with the PPA. Here 10 companies will showcase brand new products and innovations on the exhibition floor. Back for a second year will be the ScareZone from the team behind ScareCON, uniting a number of haunted attractions suppliers.
Elsewhere, LIW will be hosting its first “EnviroZone,” showcasing the latest green products that can help leisure facilities reduce their carbon footprint. The feature has already generated a lot of interest, with exhibitors coming on board looking to educate and influence senior decision makers from across the out-of-home leisure industry.
“Having witnessed the growing importance for companies to be more environmentally conscious, we thought it was necessary to introduce a range of companies that can help make this happen,” says Play & Attractions event manager, Chris Brown. “A dedicated theatre on the show floor will have a number of seminars from exhibitors, who will explain what government grants are on offer and what effects their products will have on energy consumption.”
Details on the Attractions Industry Party, held in previous years at Drayton Manor, had yet to be confirmed at the tome of writing, but an Attractions Industry Debate will be staged on Wednesday, September 22 (1330-1445). Chaired by new BALPPA chief executive Martin Barratt, the debate will include contributions from James Berresford of VisitEngland, Colin Bryan from Drayton Manor and the London Eye’s David Sharpe.
Leisure Industry Week 2010 takes place at the NEC in Birmingham, England, from Tuesday to Thursday, September 21 to 23. Entry is £30 on site or free to those who pre-register.