Despite the bad weather being a bit of a player itself, the rain didn’t keep over 70 industry players from the fairways and outdoor activities scheduled for the 10th anniversary of the Association’s Golf Classic, held at Rudding Park Hotel in Harrogate last Thursday, 28th June 2012.

General managers from some of the UK’s leading hotels and venues, as well as major hotel booking agents and representatives of the corporate world, turned up to compete for the sought-after HBAA golf trophy and to raise money for the chairman’s chosen charity, the RNLI. 9 teams enjoyed the 18-hole course, magnificent scenery and frequent visits from the HBAA Chair of Events, Absolute Corporate Events’ Jill Fleming, and Trinity Conferences’ Jenny Harding, with beverages and snacks that made the weather much more bearable.

Whilst the golfers attempted to master the challenging course, non-golfers were treated to a range of outdoor activities arranged by Off Limits Corporate Events, including crossbow archery, rage buggies and 4×4 off-road driving. Following the day’s activities attendees enjoyed networking, a 3 course meal and an auction to raise funds for the RNLI. Attendees bid against each other to win a stay at Chewton Glen for eight people.

The HBAA’s Chair, Chris Peacock, hosted the evening events, announcing the tournament champions and charity auction winner, Martin Stephens, Director from Off Limits Corporate Events, who helped raise £1,250 for the RNLI. When the presentations were complete, guests were entertained by Yorkshire comedian Mike Kelly and had the opportunity to network until the early hours.

The ‘Best Team of the Day’ prize went to Andrew May, National Account Director, De Vere Group, Alex Armstrong from FCM Travel Solutions; John Atkins and Dave White from International SOS. ‘Best Individual of the Day’ went to Will Helsby, Director of Sales GB, for Best Western. Winners of ‘Longest Drive’ were David Griffin, Director of Golf, Leisure and Spa at Heythrop Park Resort and Justin Cole, Commercial Director BSI. The ‘Nearest the Pin’ prize went to Mark Hoyland, General Manager from Mercure Wetherby. ‘Best Individual Front 9’ went to Stewart Bond from Puma Hotels Collection, and Jon Atkins from International SOS won the ‘Best Individual Back 9’ prize. ‘Overall Team Winners’ of the Activities Award were Liz Devaney from IHG, Natalie McGuire from Cedar Court Grand Hotel & Spa, Phil Allsopp from Lea Marston Hotel and Chris Carr from Accor. Rage buggy and 4×4 winners were Chris Carr and Jane Clement, both from Accor, and the crossbow winner was Phil Allsopp from Lea Marston.

Martin Stephens, Director of Off Limits Corporate Events, commented: “As a company, we are delighted to have worked with the HBAA in providing activities for the event, and are pleased that this year has seen an increase in the number of non-golfers – all guests had a great time and the activities provided a great form of networking for the attendees, whilst having fun in a competitive environment.”

Peter Banks, Managing Director of Rudding Park, said: “We are extremely pleased to have hosted the 10th Anniversary HBAA Golf Day. It was wonderful to be able to welcome both golfers and non-golfers to our extensive range of award-winning facilities.”

Chris Peacock, Chair of the HBAA, said: “I would like to thank both Rudding Park’s Golf Club House staff and Hotel staff for looking after us so well and ensuring our members and guests had the best possible day. I’d also like to thank the generous sponsors of holes and prizes: Best Western, Accor, Hilton Worldwide, Puma Hotels Collection, Rudding Park, Off Limits Corporate Events and Triggerfish Communications. It was great to see so many members joining us for the occasion raising another £1621,02 for this year’s Chairman’s charity, the RNLI, and I hope we will see many of them back again in 2013.

“Delivering key events to our members is a prerequisite for the Association, and we look forward to our next major event, the HBAA Annual Forum 6th – 7th September 2012 at the Radisson Blue, Stansted Airport.

Picture caption, ‘Best Team of the Day’ from left to right: Andrew May, National Account Director, De Vere Group, Alex Armstrong from FCM Travel Solutions; John Atkins and Dave White from International SOS.

For further information/event pictures please contact:
Triggerfish Communications on 020 7233 9700

 Notes to editors:

- The Hotel Booking Agents Association (HBAA) was formed in 1997 and now consists of 86 agents and 209 venue members.
- Member agents are specialists in making hotel accommodation, conference and event reservations as their core business.
- Member venues are comprised of the leading hotel chains, training centres and independent hotels and venues.
- The HBAA comprises a committee of 12 industry figureheads who oversee separate committees including: technology, partnerships, memberships, marketing & PR, events and education.
- Website: http://www.hbaa.org.uk
- Twitter: @HBAA2012