Sold out London Book Fair decamps to Excel

The London Book Fair will move to Excel next year following the first sell-out in its 34-year history at Olympia last month, Reed Exhibitions has announced.

Over 32,000sqm was sold for the event, which took place from 13-15 March.

Reed was forced to turn-away several exhibitors that attempted to take stands in the weeks running up to the show. The 2006 event will take place from 6-7 March.

"We've had a fantastic relationship with Olympia over the last 19 years but there is just not another centimetre of space available," said show director Alistair Burtenshaw. "We hope that those people we have had to turn away will book up for next year and help grow the show at Excel."

Reed's decision to move the event for global book publishers and rights buyers away from Earls Court and Olympia was also prompted by the proposed casino development at Olympia and the fact that the Ideal Home Show currently occupies the required March dates at Earls Court.

Burtenshaw said: "Our tenancy dates are very important due to other major international book fairs staged around the world. We've done over 80 presentations and taken over 350 clients to see the docklands venue and the overwhelming feedback was that we should move there. We are now working closely with City Airport, the on-site hotels and the venue team."

This year's London Book Fair attracted more than 1,700 exhibitors from 57 countries. Australia, Mexico and Singapore were among the first-time countries that took collective stands.

The overall focus of this year's event was on Australia and New Zealand, with more than 80 exhibiting companies and a series of dedicated seminars.

The London Book Fair began life at the Berners Street Hotel before moving to the Grosvenor House Hotel, the Barbican and Olympia in the course of its 34-year history.

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