Twickenham Turns on the Lights for Major Fashion Brand

Despite the massive disruption that brands have had to endure during 2020, there are some that have managed to implement at least some of their meetings and events programmes. One of which being a well-known fashion brand who held an Awards Night for their teams earlier in the autumn.

The brand is the very epitome of a challenger brand, with the general attitude that creative solutions were available to ensure their event could take despite the general environment of instability around booking events. The company was fortunate that the event was scheduled and executed in one of the few gaps when events could take place, so long as government guidance was followed around hygiene and social distancing. Equally, the business approached the event in an incredibly responsible way from the outset, and wanted it to be delivered to the highest standards of safety for its staff.

The balance was to both commit in terms of bring the teams together, in a live environment, in the same place - in this case Twickenham Stadium's South Stand. The execution of the awards element of the night was to then spread the teams out across 10 executive boxes in the stand. They could then watch a live stream of the company's Managing Director, who also played host for the evening. The event host and senior business leader was then able walk through the stadium, armed with a selfie stick and a camera which was simultaneously transmitting to all the other boxes, and present / announce the winner of each award to the candidates as they sat in their boxes.

The execution was outstanding and took bravery from the leadership team as well as the events team. It allowed for a more personal awards ceremony, a sense of theatre, and a pleasant evening. Twickenham is building up a strong reputation as a venue that can handle this kind of event, which balanced safety, technology, live and online. The natural design of the stadium, alongside the multiple choices of consecutively situated executive boxes, allows for socially distanced groups to absorb central content that is streamed directly onto large flatscreen TV's in the boxes. The stadium also worked with the organiser to establish 'bubbles' around each of the boxes, and access was staggered to allow the groups to arrive without bumping into each other.

While it was always safety first, the brands team also wanted to create a celebratory atmosphere and a sense of occasion. Here the infamous 'Twickenham bowl' was bought into play; the company's logo revolved around the stadium's 'mid-tier ribbons', the pitch floodlights were put on, lighting up the stadium and adding a to the view of those present in every executive box. Inside, LED uplighters were added to each box, as well as the corridor, adding to the atmosphere around the event.

In terms of the additional safety measures put in by the stadium, each box allowed for spacious seating for the six guests, easily distanced by 2m. Guests were greeted on arrival by hosts (wearing face masks) and taken directly to their boxes. Service was phased and delivered exclusively and directly to tables by service staff wearing full PPE at all times. Finally, guests were requested to wear face masks unless they were in their box and seated to dine.

Twickenham was also able to make the most of the stadium's recent investment in service technology; adding an extra layer of safety, but also luxury. For beverage orders, the stadium used its SeatServe app, which allows guests to order directly to their table through a QR code on the menu. Food was also personalised and delivered to each box safely and stylishly, as would befit a fashion brand.

The events fell securely within the guidelines outlined by Public Health England; it was safe, hygienically and socially, but equally important, it worked as a concept. It didn't look overly sanitised, the objectives were met, staff were rewarded for their work, but also shown that the company wanted them to have a memorable experience. Finally, everyone had a great time. The general spirit was one of embracing a new way of doing things, coming up with creative solutions and executing conscientiously, but never forgetting that events are about positive experiences.

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