Quest and NBS launch joint conference with CIMSPA

Sport England’s leading quality scheme for sport and leisure is joining forces with the industry’s top professional development body to launch a two-day conference.
The annual conference of the Quest quality scheme and its sister initiative the National Benchmarking Service (NBS) has been highly successful since its inception in 2010. Next year, for the first time, the event will run side by side with the annual conference of the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA).
The Quest NBS Conference will take place on Wednesday 10 February 2016 at Holywell Park, Loughborough, with the CIMSPA Conference taking place at the same venue the next day: Thursday 11 February 2016. Bridging the two days will be an evening reception and networking event, including presentations of Quest, NBS and CIMPSA awards.
Delegates can choose to sign up for one or both days and/or the evening reception. The first day is open to anyone interested in Quest and NBS, whether you are already in the scheme, just signed up or are simply considering it. The second day is open to anyone with an interest in CIMSPA’s work.
Caroline Constantine, Quest operations director, said: “CIMSPA and Right Directions, which manages Quest and NBS on behalf of Sport England, have enjoyed a unique corporate partnership since April 2014. Holding our annual conferences in tandem is another great way for us to share best practice and promote the benefits of both CIMSPA membership and participation in Quest and NBS to an even wider industry audience.”
Tara Dillon, CEO of CIMSPA, said: “CIMSPA is delighted to be joining forces with the popular Quest NBS Conference to host a two-day event. With double the number of high-profile speakers, interactive workshops and quality networking opportunities, this new joint conference is yet another example of how CIMSPA and Right Directions are working together to raise standards in the industry.”
Exciting changes to the Quest and NBS schemes will be announced by Constantine at the Quest NBS Conference, which will also feature an update from Sport England.
Other high-profile speakers on the Quest NBS day will include Neil Watson, CEO of research and technology company Substance; Lee Mason, CEO of the County Sport Partnership Network; and Dr William Bird, the strategic health advisor for Natural England, which is responsible for developing a ‘Natural Health Service’ that uses the natural environment as a major health resource. There will also be presentations by England Netball and Martin Symcox, CEO of lifeguard training provider IQL.
During the afternoon, delegates will have the opportunity to participate in three of six possible workshops on a range of industry topics, including Customer Insight, Health and Safety and Community Outcomes.
The CIMSPA day will include an update on the organisation’s workforce development project and other work, alongside keynote presentations on the changing face of the sector and strategy for the future.
During the day, delegates will be able to take part in three breakout sessions from a possible nine. Sessions will be broken down into themes – Ops Room, Tech Shop, Legal Court and Area Commissioning – and will include updates on new qualifications and professional standards and new sentencing guidance on health and safety breach. Speakers will include Carl Bennett, founder of Amber Health Insight, who will talk on Local Priorities – Informing Intervention Design; and Dr Steven Mann PhD, research director at ukactive, who will share his insights on The Potential Impact of Physical Activity on Public Health.
Early bird tickets for all three events cost £165 plus VAT per person. Alternatively, one day costs £70 plus VAT per person, including lunch, while the evening reception costs £25 plus VAT per person. Places are limited so early booking is advised. To secure a place, contact Jenny Hawtin at or 01582 840078, or visit:
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For further information contact:
Rhianon Howells at Big Fish Public Relations
Tel: 01727 834629
Mob: 07967 551142
Editor’s notes:
Quest is the UK Quality Scheme for Sport and Leisure. It is a tool for continuous improvement, designed primarily for the management of leisure facilities and leisure development. Quest defines industry standards and good practice and encourages their ongoing development and delivery within a customer focused management framework.
The National Benchmarking Service (NBS) provides critical data on the performance of your leisure facility. Leisure-net Solutions, in partnership with Sport Industry Research Centre (SIRC) at Sheffield Hallam University, work on behalf of Sport England to provide a seamless, rigorous and valuable collection and analysis of participation, financial and customer satisfaction data. For more information, visit
Launched in 2011, The Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA) is the professional development body for the UK’s sport and physical activity sector. CIMSPA has been awarded chartered status by the Privy Council, which came into effect at the start of January 2012. CIMSPA provides leadership, support and empowerment for professionals working in sport and physical activity and a single unified voice for the sector. The institute holds two long-term strategic priorities: To provide opportunities for young leaders to develop and succeed; and to provide leadership on the development and management of career pathways. For more information, visit

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