In February 2009 Feltech were appointed by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to provide broadcast facilities for the G20 London Summit, one of the largest gatherings of World Leaders since the end of World War II to take place in the UK. With the Summit scheduled for the 2nd April, Feltech had only 34 working days between the contract being awarded and the event going live at ExCel in London.
Feltech brought together a highly experienced project team that managed all aspects of the broadcast facilities, including Host Broadcasting to the standards demanded by the FCO and the world media. The host broadcast operation, including all audio visual and IT requirements for the Summit were managed and run by Peter Fell, Managing Director of Feltech, supported by Deputy Project Director, Greg Moores.
In the run up to the Summit Feltech worked 24 hours a day, to ensure all elements of the technical installation were completed to the highest possible technical and safety standards within the scheduled time. Many elements of the system were pre-built and tested off site prior to arrival at ExCeL, allowing for quicker on site installation. All areas of the Media Centre and Host Broadcast operation incorporated extensive health and safety systems including cable routes, ducts, bridges and power services.
As the event organiser, prior to the Summit Feltech made contact with the major UK and foreign media teams, along with their associated Governments to establish their expectations and requirements. Feltech maintained a dialogue with the world’s press throughout the process, enabling them to book broadcast facilities, and providing distribution on site of all the signals required in digital and analogue formats, PAL/NTSC, widescreen and standard aspect ratio pictures.
Host Broadcast Production
Feltech’s host broadcast production featured preview films, highlights packages, aerial footage and feature programming from the Summit including live footage of arrivals at 10 Downing Street, meeting dignitaries at Buckingham Palace and the main Summit coverage from ExCel.
Three separate outside broadcast production teams based at Downing Street, Buckingham Palace and ExCeL worked closely with FCO advisors to produce comprehensive unbiased coverage of the entire event to feed live to the world’s media.
The key to a successful host broadcast operation is to provide timely, clearly identified, unbiased coverage of events for the media. Feltech’s team of professional production, creative and technical staff work closely together to ensure all parties have access to high quality footage of the action as it happens, live and after the event in a wide variety of formats.
Media Centre at Excel
The Feltech media centre at ExCel featured 150 edit suites, 50 radio booths, an 18 camera outside broadcast unit for international pool coverage including radio steadycams; 32 international satellite uplinks, 82 live camera positions and MCR facilities for international signal switching. The media centre featured 1,000 journalist work stations complete with international telephone points, internet access, power and ancillary lighting.
In addition Feltech provided three fully equipped press conference facilities, with 800, 200 and 100 seats capacities, which could be run simultaneously. Alongside the 18 OB cameras 8 of Feltech’s ENG crews ensured all aspects of the Summit were covered.
To support the wide range of international press and delegations attending the G20 Summit Feltech provided live translation into 7 languages, multi-format tape copying and standards conversion.
To keep the media up to date with developments Feltech installed and populated a 300 screen bespoke digital message system around the venue, featuring live video feeds, G20 timetable information and key event content.
These media, production and event facilities were delivered by Feltech’s 1,200 qualified engineers & crew who provided all the support and back up to the core project team. Feltech had to work within tight security constraints, with all crew requiring access to site officially accredited and security checked, and kit remotely searched before being escorted on to site.
Feltech delivered a successful, cost effective solution that offered good value for money, within environmental and sustainable development targets.