Belfast Waterfront recently hosted RenewableUK’s 11th Annual Wave and Tidal Conference and Exhibition, the largest event of its kind not only in the UK, but throughout the world, for the first time in Northern Ireland.

Hailed as being at the forefront of developing energy generation from the tides, Northern Ireland has `charged ahead` in the global race to deliver marine and tidal energy projects, making Northern Ireland`s only purpose built conference centre the perfect venue to host such a prestigious event.

Internationally renowned for its award-winning conference facilities, Belfast Waterfront’s architecturally stunning venue was home to 500 participants and 50 exhibitors. Distinguished guests and members gathered to learn that the UK is poised to extend its global lead in marine energy technologies and discuss the case for developing the nation`s wave and tidal energy resources to their fullest potential.

In addition to the main plenary sessions, the conference centre offered a choice of spaces to facilitate concurrent sessions covering a wide range of industry topics.

What is more, the Waterfront’s city centre location was perfect for both social and educational activities and on this particular occasion, delegates enjoyed a visit to the world famous Harland and Wolff shipyard and Strangford Lough, home to the world`s first commercial tidal stream power station SeaGen, which when combined with sites in the rest of the UK, has the potential to generate the same amount of power as a nuclear energy plant.

RenewableUK’s Director of Events, Marketing and Membership, Garth Halliday, said: “The dedicated and committed staff at Belfast Waterfront Conference Centre were very helpful and efficient in all the pre-event preparation. We are delighted to be holding this prestigious conference and exhibition on wave and tidal energy – the largest of its kind in the world – in such a professional and friendly venue in central Belfast, and we hope to return here in the future.”

With a new extension boasting an additional 4,000m2 of flexible conference, exhibition, banqueting and breakout space opening in 2016, Belfast Waterfront looks forward to welcoming back existing clients and many more new opportunities.

Jennifer Patterson, Revenue and Business Generation Manager at the Belfast Waterfront Conference and Exhibition Centre commented “Our quality, service delivery and the city’s coordination of a comprehensive programme are key to the Belfast`s ability to attract such a prestigious event. To date we have already secured a number of firm commitments for the opening of our new expansion in mid 2016 and beyond. Belfast Waterfront will continue to make a significant contribution to the socio economic development of the city for many years to come and we look forward to welcoming many more national and international conferences of significant standing.”

Gerry Lennon, Chief Executive, Visit Belfast, said “Visit Belfast has been delighted to work with RenewableUK over the last few years to bring the Wave and Tidal Conference to the city. We’re proud that Belfast is the first city across the water to be chosen to host this event. As a place of inventors, innovators and game-changers, renewable energy is a key area where we see real economic opportunity, and look forward to bringing more events of this kind to the city region.”