Factoids EDINBURGH TRAINING & CONFERENCE VENUE All those extra things you really wanted to know about the Venue!


We are genuinely passionate about giving you and your group the best environment in which to be productive, effective and creative. That means we really think about how we can reduce any frustrations to help you enjoy an easier, smoother running event. Here are a few of those things…


Open All Hours!

It may surprise you to know that the venue is available at weekends, in the evenings and indeed all night if you need it. In fact one Xmas Eve we were open until 3am on Xmas morning for a group of 100 delegates!

Evening events are now the norm and we’re open almost every night after 6pm for a whole host of different events including training, networking and presentations, so you won’t be alone if you need space at that time.

Video Conferencing

There have been video conferencing calls covering all manner of situations, including job interviews, witness interviews for live court cases, banking & legal team meetings and health officials liaising with staff on the islands.

Many of these calls need to take place out of normal office hours – we can easily accommodate those timings and will often resolve technical issues at the other end too!We’ve been open til 2am for a video conference call to Australia, opened up at 3am for a call to New Zealand and have hosted successful calls to quite a range of locations like Washington, Dubai, Singapore, and Mumbai (for the Head of the Bank of India).


We have been open every weekend, Saturdays AND Sundays, since 2005. It can be even busier on a Saturday than during the week these days, with many training courses being run at a time that doesn’t take delegates away from their Monday to Friday workplace.


Just because it’s out of normal hours doesn’t mean there’s any less service! You can still enjoy our friendly meet and greet for your guests, on-site technical support, freshly prepared, locally sourced food in the restaurant or in a buffet to suit your needs, fresh Colombian Fairtrade coffee, tea from a selection of 27 varieties including traditional, decaf, fruit, green and organic… and plenty of natural daylight to keep you in the present.So if you need to organise something for an evening or a weekend, we are positively Open for Business!

Ace Adaptors!

Have you ever experienced the nightmare of arriving at a venue to present a course, only to find the venue doesn’t have the correct adaptor to connect your device to the data projector?

Worry no more! Here at the Venue we have an unbelievable 19 different adaptors to fit every make & model of laptop or tablet. Be it Apple or Windows, iPad or an Android device you’ll be up and running with a projector in no time.

If we can, we will!

Is the Writing on the Wall?
Well not in that sense! The popular ‘Walltalker’ turns a whole strip of wall into a whiteboard. So now you can really put your creative juices to the test and write all over the wall without getting a detention!

You just use dry wipe pens as you would for a traditional whiteboard and now you can develop a presentation or brainstorming session right across the wall without having to switch flip chart paper or rub out a whiteboard for more space.

Niggle-free Zone:

Did you know that before you walk into your room in the centre, it will have been put under the magnifying glass with a 57 point checklist.

You know how the little things can niggle you when you’re using an external venue… whiteboard pens that don’t work, dirty marks on the carpet, Blu-Tack on the walls, empty bottles of water?

Well here at the venue we put each room through its paces every day with a triple-checked 57 point checklist to ensure that NOTHING will niggle you. That way you can just focus on delivering the perfect event.

Don’t tell anyone though …we wouldn’t want you to think we’re obsessed!

Leaf you wanting more!

Our plant supplier has changed! We are very grateful to The Benholm Group, a family-run business that specialise in supplying plant-related services, who come in every few weeks to regularly maintain the 28 live plants throughout the Venue. We also have 6 artificial plants and 1 Nordic Moss panel to brighten up and circulate oxygen around the building.

It has been found that plants in a work environment can reduce stress, reduce humidity levels, even filter pollutants from the air! We like our delegates working in the best conditions possible to increase productivity, creativity and reduce fatigue.

Take a minute to enjoy all the colours next time you’re in!

Keeping you Charged!
We reckon you’d be hard pushed to find a phone that we couldn’t help you charge! Meanwhile feel free to plug your phone in whenever you’re in the building.

Two of these charging stations live in the coffee lounge and have adaptors for the most popular Apple and Android models.

You’ll also find that every PC in the Internet Cafe is fitted with ten different adaptors, catering for almost any make of phone you might have. Just remember to keep an eye on your phone and take it with you when you leave the room! You can even borrow a charger if you prefer.

If your phone is completely dead and you don’t have time to watch over it in the coffee lounge or Internet Cafe, just bring it to the office and we’ll look after it for you while it’s charging.

We also have adaptors to cope with most overseas plugs – again just ask …If we can, we will!

How many Pens?

Such a simple, innocent thing and yet this pen is deceiving!

Along with a name tent and a note pad, each delegate receives one of these smart pens …so delightful to use that visitors literally vote with their fingers and a whopping 12,971 got taken home last year!

If those 12,971 pens were laid end-to-end from our venue, they would stretch a whole mile or so …up to the top of St Mary’s Street and left onto The Royal Mile …right across North Bridge …left at the Balmoral Hotel onto Princes Street and all the way to …Where?

Have a guess before you see the answer

There’s just something about our pens that make them a pleasure to use!

Always on time:

Did you know that all the clocks in the venue are radio controlled by the National Physical Laboratory (NPL)?

Their MSF time signal is broadcast every single minute from Anthorn Radio Station in Cumbria, keeping the clocks here super accurate. They even keep on top of the odd leap second that gets added to a day once in a while!

Meanwhile are you wondering what MSF stands for? NPL explain that it’s the three-letter call sign used to designate the UK’s 60 kHz standard-frequency and time signal. The first character can only be 2, G or M for a UK-based signal, and it appears that MSF was chosen from the available combinations so that it could be memorised as “Master Standard Frequency”. However, MSF is not intended to be an acronym. So that clears that up!

And if you’re interested to learn even more about this dedicated time broadcast, including the substantially omnidirectional horizontal radiation pattern, you’ll want to visit NPL’s website.


Listed Building

Keeping in theme with the history of Edinburgh, the building that the Edinburgh Training and Conference Venue occupy has a Grade B listed building status. According to Historic Environment Scotland a Grade B listing is a “building of special architectural or historic interest which are major examples of a particular period, style or building type.”

Prior to the redevelopment, St Mary’s Street, formerly St Mary’s Wynd, was essentially a slum – living conditions were critical in the early 19th century being called the worst slum in Europe due to the lack of sanitary standards. This paved the way from the 1867 Edinburgh Improvement Act involving the clean-up of 34 areas of the Old Town.

Cousin & Lessels were the two appointed architects to the City Improvement Trust which saw the redevelopment of parts of the Old Town with St Mary’s Street being one area. In 1867, the wynd was widened by removing all the buildings on the east side and it was renamed St Mary’s Street. The new buildings were intended for workers and artisans, specifically created to keep away the previous residers who were too poor to afford the rent.

The entirety of St Mary’s Street is considered as a Grade B listings to maintain the Scots Baronial tenement style and periodic building type. In the effort to preserve the building, we have carried out extensive work to the roof and stonework over the last two years to ensure it is wind and watertight.

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