National Exhibition Centre (NEC)

Experience some of the most popular public and trade shows Birmingham has to offer at the NEC.

Birmingham NEC
Birmingham NEC

History

Opened by the Queen in 1976, the NEC is the largest exhibition centre in the UK, comprising of 20 halls and the Genting Arena. The first event to be staged at the venue was the International Spring Fair, which has returned every year since along with a whole host of other exhibitions and conferences. BBC Good Food Show, Clothes Show Live; Crufts Dog Show, and Horse of the Year Show are just some of the biggest and best events that have taken centre stage at the NEC.

Getting there

The NEC complex sits on the outskirts of Birmingham but is at the centre of a transport hub.

Getting there by air

Birmingham International Railway Station is just minutes away from Birmingham Airport on the free and fast Air-Rail Link.

Top tip

If you’re arriving by car, make sure you follow the electronic signs for your event. These will lead you to the nearest available car park. With express, pre-paid or just turn up and pay parking options, you’ll be able to find the best spot in no time.

Getting around the centre

The NEC may be the busiest exhibition centre in Europe, but it’s easy to get around.

Layout

Set in grounds of 611 acres, including a lake, the NEC is made up of 20 interconnected halls. This flexible space can cater for exhibitions, conference and meetings, as well sports events and live music in the 16,000 capacity Genting Arena. Check out the NEC website to find out what the venue will look like for your event.

Disabled access

With dedicated ticket hotlines, designated parking, wheelchair accessible viewing areas and plenty of disabled toilets, the NEC has full disabled access. Let the venue know about your special requirements when you book and they’ll arrange everything you’ll need on the day.

Eating and drinking

If wandering around exhibition stalls leaves you feeling peckish, there are plenty of places for you to refuel.

Pizza slices

Inside the NEC

As you’d expect from a huge venue like the NEC, there’s plenty of restaurants, cafés and bars. The Edge offers sandwiches, hot meals, pizzas, pastas and a grill. You’ll also find well-known brands such as Subway, Wetherspoons and Starbucks.

Resorts World at the NEC

Around the NEC

Why not explore the 661 acres surrounding the NEC? You’ll find plenty of options including Resorts World. This leisure and entertainment complex sits inside the NEC complex. With a selection of restaurants and bars, as well as a casino, spa and IMAX cinema, you’ll be spoilt choice before, during or after your event.

Looking for a hotel in Birmingham?

Whether you want to stay in Birmingham’s city centre, leafy suburbs or beautiful surrounding countryside, we have lots of hotels to choose from. If you need to be right on the doorstep, we have hotels next to Birmingham Airport and New Street Station, as well as the NEC, Barclaycard Arena and the Bullring.