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One of the countless travellers to fall foul of the fallout from the Icelandic volcano, she dialled up from her home in Ireland to set out the latest statistics giving the scope and state of the global market… and made some highly interesting predictions for the next decade.

She concluded by urging delegates to take part in future surveys, explaining just how vital their help was in gathering information to gauge trends.

The second speaker was brand and shopping specialist Sarah Farrugia, who brought the consumer’s eye view to bear on everything from shop fronts and window displays to advertising and marketing. Her sometimes controversial arguments led to a lively debate, but left everyone with a great deal of food for thought.

The day was completed with lunch followed by selected tours of Waddesdon itself, the great mansion near Aylesbury built by the Rothschilds and housing a grand collection of English and European fine art, furniture and works of art.