Visitors to the Grand Designs Live show at the NEC in Birmingham are being encouraged to consider ways of cutting down on their household bills and growing their own food.
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The GMB Union says they're pleased Birmingham City Council intends to honour equal pay settlements for women but is concerned about jobs and costs for users if the NEC group is sold off. The council says it can't afford to invest in the complex and help it grow.
Whilst happy that BCC intend to honour their obligations in respect of equal pay settlements we in the GMB have grave concerns that the NEC group is to be sold off to the private sector. This will inevitably lead to increased costs to the residents of Birmingham and the wider users of these prime facilities and could lead to either job losses or reduction in terms and conditions of employment.
Birmingham City Council has announced it is selling off the NEC group. The council, which is facing a £1.1 billion bill for equal pay settlements, says it wants to ensure its existing uses are preserved.
The venue is one of the biggest exhibition centres in Europe and also houses the 16 thousand seat LG Arena which hosts concerts and conventions.
Watch Callum Watkinson's report on the council's decision to put one of the city's best-loved assets up for sale.
Calling today's announcement "historic", Council leader Sir Albert Bore said the sale was necessary for the venue and events company to grow.
"The NEC Group has reached a point in its evolution where it needs to be able to adopt the financial disciplines of a private, rather than council-owned company," he said.
Birmingham City Council is putting the NEC Group up for sale. The group includes the National Exhibition Centre, the International Convention Centre, the National Indoor Arena and the LG Arena.
It is claimed the group brings in four million visitors and £2 billion to the region every year, and supports 30,000 jobs.
One of the UK's largest cycling events, The Cycle Show, takes place this weekend at the NEC in Birmingham.
The event will showcase hundreds of bike.
More than 460 exhibitors will be at the NEC Livestock Event today, showcasing the latest developments in technology for the dairy farming industry. Products which will be on display include:
- Robotic milking machines
- Computerised calf feeders
- Milk pregnancy test kits
- Computerised neck collars to detect cow fertility
- A mini robotic forage sweeper
- Hi-tech milk storage tanks that the farmer controls by text
- The latest in hi-tech formulated diets for cows
The UK's biggest livestock event will take place at the NEC today, attracting thousands of farmers from across the country.
Farmers will discuss the region's influence on the livestock sector and meet with industry retailers and suppliers.
One of the UK's largest competitive dairy shows will take place, with 180 cows taking place, including six different breeds.