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BISA and SpaBA to join forces

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Two previously independent UK spa associations - the British International Spa Association (BISA) and the Spa Business Association (SpaBA) - are to join forces as part of plans to form one unified body for the country's spa industry.

The new - as yet unnamed - association has identified three priority areas for development: education; accreditation, benchmarking and the implementing of a code of practice; and market intelligence and providing quality data for the UK spa industry. The launch of the new association - along with the new name and branding - is expected to take place in April.

Charlie Thompson, head of health and beauty for Virgin Active, will become the new chair of the association, while Berni Hawkins, the current chair of BISA, will become a deputy chair with a responsibility for education.

She will be joined by two other deputy chairs - Alex de Carvalho (responsible for market intelligence) and Lesley Bacon (responsible for accreditation and code of practice).

Charlie Thompson said: "It is an exciting time for the UK industry, so a good single-minded association is exactly what we keep being told our prospective members want."

SpaBA had announced last month that it was planning a relaunch this year.

BISA was set up in 1998 by a group of professionals within the beauty, spa and education fields to promote minimum standards of quality and service within the spa industry and to improve and promote education for spa therapists.

SpaBA was launched in April 2004 and replaced the former British Spas Federation.

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Two previously independent UK spa associations - the British International Spa Association (BISA) and the Spa Business Association (SpaBA) - are to join forces as part of plans to form one unified body for the country's spa industry.
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