Back in Birmingham

Here are the answers to some of the questions about Birmingham that people have been asking, and more info on how you can get involved.

What has changed from last year?

Hopefully not much that you will notice! We've listened carefully to all the feedback from last year and spent a lot of time improving signage and how the flow of people will work around the site, changed some room set-ups and uses, increased the shuttle bus service between hotels, and tweaked a lot of little bits and pieces.

There are a few things you might notice: marquees outside the Hilton to give us more space, the YTL programme moving out of the NEC, the Chanukah decour and atmosphere - and we're excited to see you interact with and enjoy them.

What is the Birmingham site like?

This year, the vast majority of  sessions will once again be under one roof in the Hilton Birmingham Metropole hotel, with additional programming for Families and Young Limmud in the Crowne Plaza.

I'm worried about security at the event

As in previous years, Limmud Conference will be supported by the Community Security Trust (CST) who will be providing security 24/7 throughout the event. The CST are working closely with West Midlands Police and the NEC security, who we have met with as part of our Conference planning. You can help the CST team to help us, by always wearing your Limmud ID badge, and by ensuring you do not leave any unattended items around the site.

Where will I be staying, and what facilities will be available?

Limmud will have exclusive use of three on-site hotels: the Hilton Birmingham Metropole hotel, the Crowne Plaza (Families) and the 5* Genting Hotel (Premium). These hotels surround Pendigo Lake and are within a five-minute walk of each other.

We will also have exclusive use of the ibis Styles, a fifteen-minute walk from the Hilton; and Economy rooms in other local hotels.

All bedrooms will be en suite, and there will be options for single, twin and double bedrooms, as well as family rooms. We will update all participants regarding which hotel they have been placed in ahead of Conference, so you can make sure to check in to the correct one!

All participants this year will be staying in hotel rooms with adjoining (ensuite) bathrooms, complimentary toiletries and towels. If you book to stay in our Premium accommodation then your room will be cleaned daily throughout Conference and toiletries and towels will be refreshed. In order to make Conference as affordable as possible, Economy, Ibis and Hilton rooms will not be cleaned as standard during your stay.

Room cleaning, additional towels and toiletries for Economy, Ibis and Hilton rooms may be available directly from the hotel for a small fee - more details will be available closer to Conference.

Please see the accommodation information pages for further details.

How will I get around if I am staying off-site?

If you have driven to Conference, ample (free) parking space is available at the Hilton and by the NEC. We will provide free onsite shuttle buses stopping at all hotels throughout the day so that if you are staying hotels which are slightly further away (up to 25 min walk) you will not need to shlep!

I’m worried that I’ll get lost!

We will have clear signage and maps on site to enable easy navigation, which have reviewed and updated from last year with our enhanced knowledge and experience of running Conference on this site.

What about the programme?

The programme is shaping up to be just as amazing and engaging as ever. We have a variety of programming and social spaces to meet different needs and styles of session. From lectures, panel debates and discussions, to workshops, classes and discos, there will be something for everyone. We will make frequent presenter announcements via our website and on Facebook and Twitter. Follow us to keep up to date with the latest news.

Can I present a session?

It's a core Limmud value that "Everyone should be a student and anyone can be a teacher", and we encourage anyone who wants to present a session to do so - whether your interest is Talmud, Jewish History, Israeli Dance or 12th century marginalia, there will be people at Limmud who'll share your interest and passion.

Don't be worried if you've not presented before - be in touch with the programming team who can give advice and assistance. Just tick the "I would like to present a session" box on the application form and you'll get an email with more details.

I have special needs, what about me?

Participant care is always central to our events - please complete the "special access, medical, or other needs" form linked to on the application page, and the Conference team will endeavour to accommodate your needs. Participants with special needs will also be contacted before Conference to ensure their needs are met.

I’m coming with my children, what about my family’s needs?

We will have a designated families hotel, with a family dining room. There will also be an exciting Families Programme to cater for different age groups, which includes Young and Teen Limmud.

And can I come for Shabbat?

Yes! Shabbat Limmud will take place from 23-24 December and we'd be honoured if you'd join us. Shabbat at Limmud Conference is always a more intimate and relaxing affair, so there is a lot to be said for getting settled and familiar with the new site, 'ahead of the game' before the influx of other participants on Sunday. Find out more here

What if I can’t come for the whole event?

This year we will be offering the option to attend Limmud Sunday-Tuesday and Tuesday-Thursday, as well as flexible non-residential day places, and some non-standard stay options in Economy accommodation. Please see the prices page for all available options for this year.

Can I bring my pets?

As much as we believe that Limmud should be for everyone, unfortunately this does not yet extend to pets. Only registered guide dogs will be permitted on site so please make suitable arrangements for other pets to be cared for whilst you are away.

What if I don’t know anyone...?

That won't last long! We always try to make it easy to meet people at Limmud events, and this year is no exception, so not knowing anyone shouldn't put you off. With a wide and varied range of social programming, you’ll soon get to know fellow like-minded participants. Another great way to meet people is to volunteer, so get in touch if you are interested.

Sounds great, how can I get involved and help?

Limmud is run almost entirely by volunteers, and we’ll need lots of people to help with all aspects of the event. There are plenty of ways to get involved either before or during Conference. You can do everything from helping to direct people around the hotel on the first day of Conference, to coordinating all the plans for families, and everything in between - there are lots of ways you can get involved.

If you would like to volunteer to help create Limmud Conference 2016, please contact the co-chairs of the volunteers team for this year, by emailing conf16-volunteers@limmud.org.