MS Life 2014
This was a weekend where an MS sufferer was able to mix with and see other MS Sufferers courtesy of the Multiple Sclerosis society UK.
MS Life 2014 was a golden opportunity to find out so much. Latest research, symptom management, get expert advice and tips on living with MS were subjects you could explore. A much anticipated event that happens every other year.
First visit to an MS Life exhibition
As you entered the exhibition hall there was a feeling of anticipation. I was early and I really did not know what to expect. I had a box full of my business cards and I was going to network.
I travelled up on Saturday morning by train and returning home on the Sunday afternoon. I was able to park my suitcase at the entrance to the exhibition; it was quick and easy to get in to the show.
I did not look at the program in advance
I’m not too sure if that was a good idea or not. Once at the exhibition I guess I was a bit like a child in a sweet shop. I decided the best thing would be to see people who were exhibiting and talk to them. There was a genuine sense of excitement in the air.
I met some people who I already knew and people that I had not met before. Everyone I spoke to was interested in my website and my MS talks. There was plenty of space, only too often exhibitions like this are crammed with stands and you lose your bearings. Mind you space was needed because of all the wheelchairs and mobility scooters. Also there were plenty of chairs and tables to sit down, relax, recharge the batteries and plan the next foray.
There were a wide range of exhibitors showing equipment that cost just a few pounds up to equipment costing several thousand pounds as well as exhibitors for services and benefits. Yes, it was all very impressive and in an impressive venue at Manchester.
There was space for more exhibitors. Here are a few examples of the type of exhibitor I would like to have seen; exhibitors selling rollators and walking sticks. There was only one stand selling pavement mobility scooters. There was no one selling physiotherapy/exercise equipment. There were not many exhibitors selling items that improve the quality of life or ideas for the garden.
There was an enormous variety of talks and demonstrations. I only managed to see a couple on the first day. There was a very good talk at the end of the day Professor Giovannoni and Dr Jeremy Chataway on disease modifying treatments. The presentation was hugely enjoyable. The link to the video is shown at the bottom.
Looking through the program now, I see so many talks that would have interested me but I did not get to hear them. Hey, I enjoyed myself and that is what really counts.
In the evening I wanted to have a Chinese meal in Manchester China town. Not one single restaurant that I saw was wheelchair accessible. Umm, I was very unimpressed so I ended up eating in the hotel restaurant.
The second day was much less hectic, far fewer people and by mid-afternoon people were starting to pack up and the atmosphere was much flatter.