Famous faces are heading to the Spa in Bridlington

Mary Portas
Mary Portas

A RETAIL expert joins two political heavyweights and a major sporting star at an event in Bridlington this summer.

Queen of Shops Mary Portas, political commentators and former MPs John Prescott and Michael Portillo, and former middle distance runner Steve Cram will all speak at the seventh annual Yorkshire International Business Convention (YIBC) to be held at the Spa in June.

Also to appear at the convention is Richard Branson’s former right-hand man, Will Whitehorn.

Event mainstay Dr Paul Sewell OBE will again take centre stage as the master of ceremonies.

He said: “We’re delighted to be able to announce these speakers. Each of them will bring something very different to the Spa.

“These are people with real experiences to share and they will do so in a very engaging manner.

“Each speaker has the capacity to inspire, educate and entertain delegates who will be able to apply some of those lessons learned to their own business and organisational environments.”

In these difficult economic times, Mary Portas has gained a reputation for her retail savvy and recently delivered her independent report to the Government on the future of the UK’s High Street.

The convention also sees the prospect of two political heavyweights going head to head on stage.

Michael Portillo, former Conservative MP, cabinet member and now media commentator and broadcaster, will share the stage with Hull’s no-nonsense, plain-speaking former Deputy Prime Minister Lord Prescott.

A ‘headline’ speaker is also expected to be added to the line-up, with a number of leading speakers in the frame and the rumour mill going into overdrive over who that could be.

“We aim to bring and indeed have brought the finest speakers to YIBC and this year is no different. Our headline speaker will be a star, a leader in their field.” added Dr Sewell.

The event’s main sponsor will be KC, which provides a range of communications services to consumers and businesses in Hull and East Yorkshire.

Dr Sewell recommended that businesses snap up tickets early, and added: “The reality is that the event could not take place without its sponsors and we’re delighted that KC is supporting us in 2012.”