For Families

Information for families attending the Annual Meeting.


We strive to ensure our meetings are as inclusive as possible and want to encourage families to attend the Annual Meeting. We have therefore added concessionary rates to recognise this. Please refer to the registration page for details.

Accompanying Person

If you are attending the meeting and have a partner, or other person who does not wish to attend the scientific programme but would like to come along to the social programme, this rate would cover all lunches, coffee breaks, poster sessions and the welcome mixer. Only the dinner would need to be added as an additional cost.

Family Registration

If you are coming along to the meeting with children and both parents/carers wish to attend the scientific programme, we understand that half of your time as a parent will be looking after your child so will offer a discounted registration rate.


We are pleased to be offering onsite childcare facilities during BES2019, through local company, Lullaby Childcare.

All ages of children are welcome, including new-borns. To be sure of a place you must book in advance. However, any spaces not pre-booked will be available on a first-come, first-served basis at the event, please ask at the Information Desk. Please note, childcare is not available during the lunch period – parents/carers are responsible for collecting their children and providing their lunch.

Childcare will be available during the following times:

  • Wednesday 11 December: 08:15 – 18:00
  • Thursday 12 December: 08:30 – 17:30
  • Friday 13 December: 08:45 – 16:30

The cost is £40 per day and childcare will be located within the Family Room – Boardroom 3.

Please contact Amy Everard if you are interested in booking Childcare, or for more details.


Belfast Zoological Gardens
Home to more than 140 species of animal, many of which are endangered in their natural habitat, Belfast Zoo is one of the oldest visitor attractions in Northern Ireland. The zoo has been open since 1934, and is now a leading and award-winning visitor attraction, with more than 300,000 visitors each year.

W5 at Odyssey
This is an award-winning science and discovery centre based at the Odyssey Complex in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter. W5 at Odyssey is a science and discovery centre, not a museum, so visitors of all ages are free to let their imagination fly through more than 250 hands-on, permanent exhibits in four incredible exhibition areas: Discovery, Go, See and Do.

Botanic Gardens
The Botanic Gardens was established in 1828 by the Belfast Botanic and Horticultural Society, in response to public interest in horticulture and botany. Originally known as the Belfast Botanic Garden, the site contained exotic tree species and impressive plant collections from the southern hemisphere, many of which can still be seen in the park. Access is free.

CS Lewis Square
Rediscover The Chronicles of Narnia with a walk through CS Lewis Square, a public space commemorating the Belfast-born author C.S. Lewis. Featuring seven bronze sculptures from ‘The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe’, including Aslan, The White Witch, Mr Tumnus, The Beavers, The Robin and The Stone Table, it is a stunning display of public art.

JACK Coffee Bar is located on the ground floor of EastSide Visitor Centre on C.S. Lewis Square, offering coffee and treats as well as a selection of ‘food to go’.

Belfast Christmas Market
From mid-November and through December, you can explore Belfast’s Christmas Market outside the beautiful Belfast City Hall. Open from 10:00 – 22:00.

Ulster Museum
The Ulster Museum is home to a rich collection of art, history and natural sciences and is free to all visitors. The museum tells the story of the people of the north of Ireland from earliest times to the present day. Impressive galleries and interactive discovery zones bring history, science and art collections to life for visitors of all ages. 

Restaurants & Cafes

The Arthur Street Café at Avoca Belfast City Centre is a great spot to chill out in between shopping and site seeing. Spacious with an eclectic vintage style, it features lots of freshly-prepared favourites from Avoca’s award-winning menu. The menu includes signature baking (scones) and plenty of great, locally sourced seasonal ingredients.

Benedicts of Belfast
Located in a lovely central hotel, Benedicst of Belfast offers great food, casual dining, and a kids menu.

Bobbin café serves coffee and traditional food in Belfast City Hall (one of Northern Ireland’s most iconic buildings) and is located in the centre of Belfast. Operated by Loaf Catering and Cafes, the café provides 15 training and work experience places each week for people with a learning disability, autism or Asperger’s. All of the café’s profits go to its parent organisation NOW Group, a social enterprise supporting people with learning difficulties and autism in jobs with a future.

Bright’s Restaurant
Situated on High Street, Bright’s Restaurant is right in the heart of Belfast City Centre, within easy reach of all the main shopping and sightseeing attractions in Belfast. It serves traditional Irish food such as fish and chips, as well as vegan/veggie options and a kids menu.

City Picnic
City Picnic is a relaxed classic diner style restaurant, offering gluten free and vegetarian options as well as a kids meal. Great for a quick meal on the go.

Frankie & Benny’s
Frankie & Benny’s serves up simple New York Italian cuisine with lots of choice and a kids menu.

Fratelli Ristorante, Pizzeria & Bar Belfast oozes rustic Italian charm with a contemporary edge in the heart of Belfast City Centre, with a ‘Little Boars’ menu just for the kids

Ryan’s Belfast
Ryan’s bar is popular with locals and students alike and is family friendly venue with kids eating FREE on Saturdays and Sundays!

Useful Links:

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What’s on

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