Time to put on your best Frank Sinatra voice – “It’s the most wonderful time of the year!”

Nope, we’re not talking about Christmas; we’re talking about September, as it was time to return to Birmingham for the Emergency Services Show, undoubtedly the biggest conference event in our calendar and fair to say our best ESS yet!

Our time in the Midlands began on Tuesday as the team clubbed together to set up the stand, fashioning some on-brand Hi-Vis jackets – the luminous yellow a stark contrast to our usual office attire! We were also delighted to be joined by Alison & Janet from Jones & Bartlett Learning for the event, our US colleagues whom we represent throughout Europe.

The morning of the show quickly came around and the team eagerly waited in their ‘Are You Following Me?’ Twitter tees as the doors opened to the 4,000 delegates expected to attend the first day. Within minutes, the first group of people came over to the stand and headed straight for the gleaming JRCALC 2019 Guidelines – it was finally time to ditch the well-thumbed 2016 editions!

Before we knew it, the clock struck 10:30 – the launch of the new second edition of Ambulance Care Essentials & Ambulance Care Practice. AACE Chief Executive Steve Irving opened the launch, followed by a few words from authors Richard Pilbery and Kris Lethbridge and some celebratory shortbreads to hand. We were thrilled to see so many people stopping by especially for the launch, including those who modelled in the photo shoots.

The great thing about the Emergency Services Show is the sheer volume of the event; so many interesting stands to visit, not to mention the West Midlands Fire Service Extrication Challenge and Trauma Challenge, hosted by Class author Simon Todd with the UK Research Organisation. A few of the team even managed a sneaky five-minute break from our stand to visit the Ortis Fest bar!

Day two of the event certainly didn’t disappoint as there wasn’t a moment where the stand was empty! By early afternoon, we had sold out of all 200 copies of the JRCALC pocket books and our eco-friendly tote bags had all been dispersed amongst the NEC. It was also great that our human, and non-human, friends took selfies for our #StrikeAPose Twitter competition, where they could be in with a chance with winning a year’s membership to our new CPD app Paramedic Passport (ParaPass), coming later this year.

The stand was still packed within the last hour of the show, with some popping over not necessarily to buy but just to say hi – always a delight to put a face to a name!

As the doors to Hall 5 closed for another year, we were left feeling overwhelmed with joy as, in the number of years we’ve exhibited at ESS, our sales record had been broken! We can’t wait to do it all over again next year, building new relationships and launching more books and products.

See you all in 2020!

Sophie Holman