Torbay Council, TDA and the English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark will be hosting the 7th International Conference on UNESCO Global Geoparks, from Tuesday 27 to Friday 30 September at the Riviera International Conference Centre (RICC).

The conference will see nearly 700 delegates from over fifty countries visit Torbay, for the first Global Geoparks conference since UNESCO formally adopted the programme in November 2015.

This event will bring significant visitor spend to the Bay, projected to be in excess of £1.6m, and the international profile for Torbay associated with staging such a high profile international conference.

Between 2pm and 5pm, on Tuesday and Wednesday, the RICC will open its doors to the public for the Geofair. If you have ever wondered what a Geopark is or what other Geoparks look like, now is your chance to find out more about Geoparks from across the globe.

Many of the countries such as China, Indonesia, South Korea, Finland and Denmark have stands at the Geofair to showcase their Geoparks. This a great opportunity to take a UNESCO Global Geopark trip around the world to experience different Geoparks and cultures, all in one place!

There are 44 stands in total and other exciting stands include the Natural History Museum, and the Geological Society. Closer to home there are local stands such as the Churston Traditional Farm Shop.

The English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark successfully bid for the 7th International Conference on Global Geoparks with the support of Torbay Council, TDA, Plymouth University, Exeter University, The Geological Society, British Geological Survey, English Geodiversity Forum, Natural England, Arts Council England, Natural History Museum and Flybe.

The conference takes place every two years and has previously been staged in China (2004), Northern Ireland (2006), Germany (2008), Malaysia (2010), Japan (2012) and Canada (2014.) 2016 will be the first occasion that the conference takes place in Great Britain.

There are seven Global Geoparks in the UK, out of a total UNESCO network of one hundred and twenty spread over 33 countries. A Geopark is concerned with conservation of natural heritage, sustainable economic development, promotion of science education and community engagement.

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