In the summer, 10-11 Carlton House Terrace hosted an interview panel for the Leverhulme Trust at the first event the London venue was able to host since reopening after the spring lockdown.

They were looking to appoint a new Director and recognised it was a process best carried out face to face. The Leverhulme Trust is a large, UK grant-making organisation that has been funding research, fellowships, bursaries and more for nearly 100 years.

The Trust had a number of criteria their choice of venue needed to meet and 10-11 Carlton House Terrace was just the right fit. It was important to them that the panel was hosted somewhere familiar; it needed to be in a convenient, central location; the venue had to have large enough spaces to host their group and they needed to know they could rely on the team to run the day smoothly and professionally. Their enquiry came in mid-May and planning promptly got underway.

With lockdown still in full swing throughout the planning process, the team ensured regular communication with the Trust about any news or changes to current regulation. The client appreciated this: “Communication in the run up to the event was good. They gave us no reason to be concerned and all of our queries were responded to positively and promptly.” The 10-11 team also ensured attendees were aware of the procedures they’d need to follow at the venue.

In total, seven people attended the day. This small group was perfect for getting everyone at the venue quickly back in the swing of things and made it easy to make sure everyone was adhering to the new safety measures in place.

The day began with staggered arrival times between 9:00 and 9:30 to remove the risk of guests gathering at the entrance. They were also required to sanitise their hands and confirm their arrival for the Track and Trace system in place. Whilst all staff at the venue are required to wear masks, guests are not – provided they can keep a safe physical distance. A one-way system throughout the building helps ensure this is possible at all times.

The team worked hard in the run-up to the event to make sure these extra processes wouldn’t infringe on the day, and as testament the client shared: “We didn’t feel the COVID processes hindered our day at all. Safety was the prime concern and we were all made to feel safe throughout.” After arriving, each guest was escorted upstairs to the Music Room and served tea and coffee by catering staff, helping to minimise any touch points.

Adjacent to the Music Room, the Council Room was the space of choice for holding the interviews. While the room would usually fit up to 32 delegates in boardroom style for an event like this, the client agreed to have a hollow-square layout for eight in order to ensure a safe distance of 2m between attendees. Bottled mineral water was included on the table and an extra serving of tea and coffee was prepared for guests on request.

The in-house caterer at 10-11 Carlton House Terrace, Searcys, developed a specially-designed touch-free menu for events, and re-trained their staff to serve food in new, safer way. Individual bento boxes were prepared for each guest which contained re-imagined classic sandwiches, salad, sides and a dessert. The boxes were well-received by attendees and service was carried out safely and successfully.

Get in touch with the 10-11 team on 020 7969 5224 or at [email protected].