NEXT week’s Durham Oktoberfest, the region’s biggest engineering and manufacturing networking event, is now fully booked to exhibitors.

The event, at the Xcel Centre, is in its ninth year and attracts hundreds of businesses from around the North East and beyond, who want to meet potential suppliers and clients.

However, there is still time to register as a visitor which is free.

Ben Gilhespy, operations director at County Durham Engineering and Manufacturing Network (CDEMN), which organises Durham Oktoberfest, said: “The event is the perfect opportunity for companies to network and promote their business to potential suppliers and customers.

“We’re delighted that the exhibitor hall is now fully booked and, more importantly, that there are dozens of engineering and manufacturing firms in attendance.

“With the addition of the workshops and panel debate, we’re expecting this year’s event to be the best yet, so we’d urge anyone who hasn’t yet registered as a visitor to book now. Oktoberfest is the region’s biggest shop window and we know companies do win business as a result of attending, so don’t miss out.”

Durham Oktoberfest is taking place on Thursday, October 20, at the Xcel Centre in Newton Aycliffe.

The panel debate will feature regional business experts including Liz Mayes from the EEF; Tom Dower from the new South Durham UTC; Colin Bell, business growth director at the North East LEP; Matt Atkinson from Nine Software; Graeme Parkins from Dyer Engineering; and Roger O’Brien, director of AMAP at the University of Sunderland.

There will also be a question and answer session and attendance is by booking only, via the website, where you can also find details about the themed workshops.