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Ever Wondered what a Venue Finding Agent Does? We heard from Unlocked's Ben Parker.

While many event managers and organisers use venue finding agencies, it's not often you get to hear about what goes on behind the scenes. Our students were fortunate to have an opportunity to find out recently when Ben Parker (aka the #venueexpert) joined a class as a guest speaker. Ben is from one of the UK's most exciting and contemporary venue finding brands, Unlocked. Unlocked's arrival on the venue finding scene was welcomed by planners looking for something different for their clients as Unlocked mission is to revive unique urban spaces.

"We're unlocking unconventional spaces and using spare capacity in spectacular settings to create new experiences for brands and consumers who are tired of the same old classrooms and conference centres."

Ben, Head of Events with Unlocked and a highly experienced venue finder, brought his work to life speaking with students from our Certificate and Diploma in Event Management courses.

Ben shared his his journey into venue finding via event management and wedding planning and spoke of his busy life travelling extensively to view venues and attend famils both in the UK and abroad.

The class were fascinated to hear about how a venue finding agency operates (learning about the business model commonly used, how commission works and what the benefits are to an event planner for using a venue finding agency (time saving, knowledge of a range of venues, expertise in matching venues to client needs and their access to new venues to the market.)

Ben generously shared his top venue finding tips with the students including:

  • Start with the audience

  • Hold the dates

  • Find out what other events are taken place at the same time

  • Source accommodation at the same time

  • Know the service standard

And we were excited to hear Ben's thoughts on venue trends in 2022

  • Hybrid Event Venues

  • Short lead times

  • Outside of the city

  • Less alcohol

  • Sustainability

It was impossible not to be inspired by Ben's passion for the event industry and his role in helping clients find the perfect venue, especially when he spoke of these exiting new venue openings planned in London - Oceandiva, Art-otel Battersea and Chateau Denmark

The opportunity to hear about unlocked was also insightful as they offer something different to the traditional venue finding agency. Ben spoke to the class about Unlocked's Goal to be "The Secret Escapes of the Events Market" and of their following unique points:

  • Promotes heritage and under-utilised spaces through an online listing

  • Provides off site venue searches Europe wide

  • Provides full scale Event Management

  • Has an event Package Marketplace

Many thanks to Ben for appearing as a guest speaker and for his support in developing new talent into the venue and event industry.


About Ben Parker

Ben Parker (known to many as the Venue Expert) is an international event professional that heads up the events team at Spaces Unlocked; a venue finding and event management tech start up.

Ben started his career in events with an Internship as an Event Marketing Intern and gained hands on experience on the front line working as a steward, box office assistant and festival volunteer manager. With this great grounding in events behind him, Ben then took on the role of Event Coordinator with Wired Cumbria before becoming a Wedding Planner for Gretna Green Ltd. He moved back into the corporate world and began his journey into becoming a venue specialist as an Account and Relationship Manager with Hire Space.



Unlocked is a full service events agency and venue booking platform. First founded with the mission to revive unique urban spaces in the UK, Unlocked are now becoming the Secret Escapes of the events market.

Unlocked offer venue sourcing services throughout Europe, full scale event management and most recently an online events package marketplace. Unlocked provide a one stop solution and are a handy source of inspiration for corporate event bookers throughout Europe.


About Event Management Courses with The Event School London

Our London based courses offer an interactive, immersion experience in venues at London's premier event environment campus, ExCeL London, the UK's international event, exhibition and convention centre.

Our Virtual Courses offer an interactive, online learning experience with live online classes taught in real-time.

And our Event Management Course Trainers for both London and Virtual courses are amongst the most experienced within their fields.

Courses include:

  • Certificate in Event Management Course

  • Certificate in Event Planning Course

  • Diploma in Event Management Course

  • Certificate in Festivals and Cultural Event Management Course

  • Certificate in Venue Management course

  • MasterClasses and MicroCredentials for professional development

  • Diploma Courses in Event Management and Wedding Planning


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