Saturday, 29 April 2017


On Saturday 6th May I'll be attending my first ever comic con.  Yes at the ripe old age of 39 I've left it long enough haven't I?  The thing is, when I was younger there weren't that many comics conventions anywhere in the UK, never mind over here in Northern Ireland, where the troubles may have been in their final years but were still keeping away such things.  These days not only is this part of the island a world apart from that I grew up in, now a hive of activity for tourists and big events, but there seems to be comics events nearly every week somewhere across the UK!

I wasn't able to make last year's Enniskillen Comic Fest, but this year I'll be there with bells on for the big main day and I can't wait!  For starters I'll finally be able to meet the one-and-only Lew Stringer of Oink! fame, as well as catch-up with Davy Francis and a whole bunch of great 2000AD fans I used to go drinking with on a regular basis, including event organiser Paul Trimble who should really be commended for what he's done here.  (Guys and gals, now that I'm back in the Judge Dredd game with the Complete Case Files I'll have to make it a regular thing again after the comic fest!)

Anyway, last year's was a resounding success, with large crowds attending and a host of top comics talent from the vibrant scene we have today.  As you can see above the guests attending this year are an exciting bunch!  The main convention is on the Saturday and is completely free to enter, with the guests signing and sketching throughout the day.  There'll also be panel discussions and interviews, small press publishers (which I'm excited to see more of!) and exhibitors, as well as the obligatory merchandise and back issue dealers.

Could be an expensive day!

While I'm not going to be there on the Friday night, if you're a fan of 2000AD you should really consider going along to an event which is officially part of the 40th anniversary celebrations this year.  While not run by Rebellion themselves it's been given this status and, again, the guest list is second-to-none.  I've personally become a huge Dredd fan but am starting his tales from the very beginning with the Complete Case Files series of graphic novels rather than the regular weekly comic, so I've decided to skip the Friday and stay in Enniskillen on the Saturday night instead so that I'm in no rush away at the end of the day (the last bus is before the event finishes!  Can't be having that!)

It's also worth noting some local school children will be getting further treats on the Friday afternoon just as they did last year, with some top talent visiting local schools and offering talks and presentations.  Lew spoke about his experience at last year's event on his Blimey blog, including being invited to speak to the children, which you can read all about by clicking right here.  Great to see the younger generation still interested in comics beyond those they've seen adapted to the big screen.

The 2017 Comic Fest will be hosted at the picturesque Enniskillen Castle, only a few minutes away from the main bus station on foot and right smack in the centre of the town with easy access by car and plenty of parking nearby.  It's also just opened a new visitor centre too which will be a centrepiece of the convention; it really does look like a lovely setting for a day out, so get yourself there and join in the fun!  I'll be there with my Oink! Book 1988 to grab a couple of signatures and I'll report back here on the blog next week, but also live throughout the day via Instagram.

Yup, I'll be trying to capture what I can through my iPhone and will be posting loads of photos up on my Instagram account as I go.  If you can't make it and would like to keep up on what's happening (and what I'm getting up to) you can follow me by clicking right here or on the image below:

Hopefully see some of you there and the rest of you online, this day next week!

For more info check out the Enniskillen Comic Fest Facebook page by clicking on their banner below:

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