A core team of just six events professionals who delivered 250 events last year have described their joy at winning major recognition at the annual E Awards.

Children in Scotland, which stages events throughout Scotland in support of the children’s sector, toasted success last night at the Assembly Rooms in Edinburgh after receiving three awards at Scotland’s premier events industry prize-giving ceremony.

The organisation – which puts on a busy schedule of training events, networking events, seminars, lunches and an annual conference for 500 – was rewarded for its hard work by receiving accolades in the following categories: Best Association Event, Best In-house Agency or Event Planner or Events Team and Rising Scottish Event or Festival Star.

Karin Mckenny, Learning & Events Manager at Children in Scotland, said: “We just can’t quite believe it – we’re just so proud; we thought we might have had a chance to win one, but to come away with three is amazing.

“It was the first time we’ve been shortlisted, it’s the first time we’ve really put ourselves forward, so we’re kind of in a state of shock. But it’s great.”

“It’s really nice to get the recognition from the events industry; we work mainly with practitioners who work with children and to get recognition from our events peers is just fantastic.”

Children in Scotland’s annual conference was held at Murrayfield in November over two days and featured service delivery seminars, workshops and creative outdoor play, with children making up 30% of the contributors. The event attracted Lesley Evans, Permanent Secretary of the Scottish Government, and all levels of people working in the children’s sector from chief executive, to social worker, teachers and students.

Mckenny said: “There’s a real diversity and range to the event, from the people, who represent virtually every single children’s organisation in Scotland, to artwork, cardboard tank-building, and more serious service delivery. It’s a great event, and really hands-on.”

Mckenny paid tribute to her team who “work so hard” to deliver an extraordinary number of events across the year and who are “so fast on their feet” and “quick thinking”; she praised their response when an event they were due to host at the Scottish Parliament was cancelled with just two weeks notice. The event, on behalf of Children’s Future Food Inquiry, whose patron is Dame Emma Thompson, was cancelled due to the European Elections, which had not been expected to go ahead. With precious little time, the politicians due to attent all pulled out, leaving Children in Scotland needing to find a new venue and speakers, which they managed by securing the City Arts Centre and a new cast of contributors.

“If I could have picked a single award that I would have wanted us to get it would have been for the best team, because I work with a really brilliant bunch of people who are so supportive in everything that we do.”

In all, there were 46 finalists across 12 awards were presented on the night by fellow events professionals from across Scotland and staged by EventIt – Scotland’s annual events industry show, which returns next year for its fifth edition at the EICC in Edinburgh on March 19, 2020. Judith Wilson, Director of EventIt, said: “I’d like to pay tribute to all our nominees and winners on the night who made it such a standout evening; I’d also like to thank our three entertainers, in particular magician Kevin Quantum, who won the best entertainer award on the night in a live Slido poll. I’d also like to thank all our sponsors, our caterers and the venue for helping to stage the awards and make it such a success.”

Special thanks: Assembly Rooms, Golden Jubilee Conference Hotel, Eventsforce, DelegateManager, Pickering’s Gin

Pictures: Mairi Wilson


Best Association Event 
Children in Scotland Annual Conference, Children in Scotland

Best Event Supplier 

Best Use of Event Technology 
Digital Solutions for Tourism, Edinburgh Tourism Action Group (ETAG) 

Best Festival or Outdoor Event 
Paisley’s Halloween Festival, Renfrewshire Council 

Best Student-led Event/Festival 
Drag Me to The 80’s, Edinburgh Napier University 

Best In-house Agency or Event Planner or Events Team 
Children in Scotland 

Best Third Sector Event 
The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo – The Sky’s the Limit (2018)The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo 

Best Public Sector Event 2018
OVO Aberdeen Tour Series, Aberdeen City Council 

Best Corporate Event 
#thatswhatwecallStandardLife, 20/20 Productions

Best Scottish Venue & Events Team
Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC) 

Rising Scottish Event or Festival Star 
Svenja Schulz, Children in Scotland