Key summer trading fixture Manchester Furniture Show (running from 18-21st July) will look a little different this year, being co-located with Harrogate’s Home & Gift  rather than occupying its usual spot at Manchester Central – but there’s still plenty to look forward to … 

“The furniture industry is crying out for the opportunity to network and socialise at a large-scale, in-person event, and that is what Manchester Furniture Show is all about,” says Zoë Bonser, portfolio director for Clarion Events’ Retail division.

Indeed, the popularity of the established summer event, coupled with an extended drought for major trade shows, means excitement remains high despite the temporary relocation. 

Manchester Furniture Show in Harrogate will have its own registration process, entrances, exits and halls within the Harrogate Convention Centre (HCC), with a crossover point connecting it with the Home & Gift Buyers’ Festival, which promises a plethora of crossover buying and selling opportunities.

Confirmed exhibitors include 3C, ALF UNO, Venjakob, Alfrank Designs, Ancient Mariner, B4 Living, Bell & Stocchero, Breasley UK, Buoyant Upholstery, Carlton Furniture and Vintage Sofa Company, Cowthorpe Oak Furniture, Gala Collezione, MLILY, Heartlands, IFD, Italia Living, Kettle Interiors Agencies, La-Z-Boy UK, Rauch, SITS, Gwinner, Creation Italia, RetailSystem, Snap Finance, Furnish 365, New Trend, MFS, AWS, Marinelli, Calligaris LPD and Arya Designs.

Home & Gift’s interiors highlights include Bronte by Moon, David Fussenegger, DeluxeHomeArt, Designed In Colour, Forever England, Gallery Direct, GM Wholesale, Heyland and Whittle, London Ornaments, Originals, Portmeirion Group and Zinc Home.

“This is set to be a stellar return to large-scale events for the furniture industry,” Zoë continues. “And, like the Manchester event, Harrogate has a fun, summer holiday vibe, which we know the furniture industry will enjoy. We can’t wait for the industry to get back together again across those four days in Harrogate, instead of the usual three.”

However, says Zoë, given the wider pandemic situation, safety remains paramount, with measures such as facecoverings, wider aisles, increased ventilation, and an enhanced daily and deep cleaning regime being implemented. Numerous hand-sanitising stations will also be available.

The dual show is running as one of the Government Events Research Programme’s pilot events, so there will be no restrictions on visitor numbers or social distancing requirements, but all attendees will be required to certify that they have had two vaccinations at least two weeks prior to attending, or show proof of a negative NHS lateral flow test at least 48 hours before attending. The consent required to opt in to the programme and NHS Test and Trace will be sent to all registered buyers and exhibitors.

“With the backing of the Government, public health bodies and our key customers, we can see that the appetite and enthusiasm are there for an in-person buying and selling event,” Zoë adds.

See July's issue (see related) for a more in-depth preview of the event.