After many months of full, partial, semi and other variants of lockdown, Thursday 24 June saw 66 hospitality people get back to being social first-hand at The Belfry.
The occasion was The Clink Charity Golf Day, in association with Meiko UK, that like many industry events was unable to be held in 2020. But this year it was back, and the unanimous feedback celebrated taking a step forward towards the new post-pandemic world of hospitality.
The golf course at The Belfry was in sublime condition, the dinner in the evening exquisite, and the auction for The Clink Charity raised £4,000.
What was interesting to observe, as always, was the people taking part. How easily they returned to being social, so now, a few weeks after the event we caught up a few to get their perspective on things.
Neil Fillbrook is Chief Executive of Bank Brokers, a business that provides cost savings to hospitality businesses in their corporate banking and card payment processing. Fillbrook was delighted to bump into a few faces he knows and resume old links.
He explained by telling us: “Just before dinner I recognised Robert Richardson across the room, I knew him years ago when he was GM at The Grand in Folkestone. I went over to say hello and learnt that he was now Chief Executive of The Institute of Hospitality.
“We completed a savings exercise for The Grand and Robert was interested to know if we could do similarly for members of the IoH. We are now looking at opportunities to do precisely what Robert requested.”
We followed that up by asking Robert Richardson what he made of the day meeting Neil Fillbrook and others. Richardson was delighted to meet people from such a cross section of the industry including caterers, hoteliers, restaurateurs, publicans, job boards, suppliers, and media. He told us as much saying: “I enjoy getting out and connecting with people more than any other part of my job, it helps me understand where hospitality is at any given moment, and how I can do my job more effectively.
“The cross section representation of our industry was for me like being a child in a sweet shop. The ability to engage with people and glean views from Media people like Claire Bosi, hoteliers like Harry Murray MBE, Kathy Dyball from job board caterer.com and many others was priceless. I met with people I know well, some I had not had the pleasure of meeting previously, and re-establishing contacts like Neil Fillbrook that leads to ongoing dialogue and benefits for our 13,000 members.
“Having spent most of my working life in hotels I must congratulate The Belfry for being the perfect hosts. I will be back in 2022.”
Robert’s sentiments were echoed by the event sponsor Meiko UK, Paul Anderson, MD, Meiko UK told us: On behalf of Meiko UK we are delighted to support The Clink Charity, and will continue to do so. Such a great cause and to help raise money amidst a wonderful day at The Belfry with friends across the industry, old and new. Such a refreshing change to finally get out and support the industry. I can’t wait until next years event .
Many more of the hospitality people that took part were equally as eloquent in their praise and appreciation, you can see and hear what they had to say in the video below.
If you would like to take part in The Clink Charity Golf Day, in association with Meiko UK 2022 at The Belfry Hotel & Resort please send an email to Editor@HandCNews.com