Duncan Phillips, owner and founder of 360 Play, will be taking the Chairmanship role of the UK attractions group BALPPA for the next 2 years. Having been brought up in the leisure and theme park industry and filling the vice chair position throughout the pandemic, his experience will be invaluable in taking the UK attractions out the other side of the lockdown.
Founded in 1936, BALPPA is the non profit-making Trade Association representing the interests of owners, managers, suppliers and developers in the UK’s commercial leisure parks, piers, zoos, family entertainment centres (indoor play and soft play centres) and static visitor attractions sector.
Amongst BALPPA’s principal aims are to represent the needs and concerns of the industry to HM Government departments, policy-makers and influencers and to promote safe practice throughout the industry.
BALPPA has been particularly active over the past year representing and fighting for the leisure and hospitality industries that have been devastated by the pandemic.
A few words from Duncan:
“Our sector has had one of the most difficult times ever experienced in our lifetimes and the need to work together for the good of all has been the defining value of BALPPA this last 12 months. Under the careful Chairmanship of Richard Mancey the association has had to respond to unprecedented challenges as we have worked to serve the membership in new ways. At this time I would like to pay heartfelt thanks on behalf of the industry for Richard’s commitment to the sector and working hard to ensure our collective needs are put forward at the highest levels, at all times. On a more personal level, working alongside Richard these last two years as Vice Chairman has enabled me to appreciate his calm approach to even the most challenging of situations, thank you Richard. As we all start to look towards our industry opening back up again, BALPPA has learnt much through the pandemic that I hope will enable us to shape the Association in a way fit for the future and become even more responsive to the needs of all its members. The Pandemic has forced us to do things differently, some of which have been successful, and some of which we can’t wait to leave behind and get back to traditional methods. As your incoming Chairman I want to focus on what we have learnt to do well while still remembering what brings us all together as a body and has served us so well for many years. The use of new methods of connecting and working has certainly been one of the key learnings for me through the pandemic. Through my Chairmanship I hope to build on this to widen the reach and access to BALPPA. Not just to the key decision makers and thought leaders of organisations but to the many talented, passionate individuals who deliver our great products every day across the UK. These industry professionals, either starting out, or part way through their industry journey should be able to access all the benefits our association has to offer. By widening the organisation’s reach I think we will find greater strength and diversity of members to equip BALPPA as a must-have for tomorrow’s industry professionals. I would also like to thank Terry Monkton in agreeing to support me and the BALPPA team on this journey as my Vice Chair and I very much welcome his wider understanding of the sector from the trade side. Over the coming months as we emerge from “pandemic crisis management mode” I very much welcome meeting up with many lifelong industry friends and colleagues across the membership to see what we have learnt and what BALPPA needs to do tomorrow. Finally on a very personal note I still remember my first BALPPA event experience back in 1986 as a very young helper serving food to guests during a BALPPA Summer Conference visit to our family’s theme park Gulliver’s Kingdom. It will therefore be a great honour to serve you as your Chairman in 2021-23.”