Update – 31st May 2016

We are changing the way we work as we split into three groups to do three different things. Emails will be going out shortly to people who have previously volunteered to see what they might like to get involved with. If you were thinking of joining in over the next year or so, now would be a good time to get in touch.

The Future of Eastercon group will continue meeting, and will be responsible for reporting on what we do via the internet and at future Eastercons.

The Eastercon Support group will research and discuss options for setting up an organisation to support Eastercons. Note: We do not assume that an organisation is necessary or desirable, and options will include ‘do nothing and let Eastercon committees get on with it’. We expect this group to be busy from July until shortly after Eastercon 2017, but it will be a one-off project.

The Eastercon.org group is taking responsibility for the existing Eastercon.org wiki as a permanent resource for UK fandom.

We will continue to post updates to this site, which also has the background and history of this discussion, and any more permanent material we produce. We also now have a Future of Eastercons Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/FutureOfEastercons – if you are a Facebook user please go and ‘Like’ this to be kept informed or get in touch.

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Mancunicon

We must apologise for going silent since Mancunicon. This was due to a mixture of real life getting in the way and confusion over who was updating the website.

By now we hope you all know what we’re pleased to report: that Eastercons do have a very healthy future. Eastercon 2017 (Innominate), (replacing Pasgon, which had to fold),
will be held in the Hilton Metropole at the NEC Birmingham. Follycon in 2018 will be held in Harrogate. They both have Facebook and web pages up – given below.

The bidding sessions for both years, and the Future of Eastercon discussion, were held on Sunday morning. The room was full throughout with an audience of about 200.

During the ‘Future of Eastercon’ session we ran through a presentation of the last year’s work and conclusions, and asked what we should do next. Majorities of the audience agreed (with no opposition and we think one abstention on each point) that:

(1) We (that is the existing, informally organised, Future of Eastercon group) can take control of the existing Eastercon.org website/wiki. We’ll be doing that, with the help of its founders, Alex McClintock, John Bray and Chris O’Shea, who were also thanked for all their work to date. We want to organise this informally, but ensure some commitment and consistency. We hope to develop and maintain it as a permanent resource for fandom.

(2) We will set up a new discussion group to discuss how a central organisation might work to support Eastercons, and which of the available options for the organisation might work best. This group will report back at Eastercon 2017.

The session participants also talked about how we welcome new people to Eastercons, and the audience were very concerned to address the ageing of fandom in general and conrunners in particular. I’ll try and write up these aspects in more detail for the website shortly.

We’ll put up the presentation and statistics and other material on the website, until we can move all the material to the new Eastercon.org.

Meanwhile:
68th Eastercon 2017 – Innominate – website: http://eastercon2017.uk/
69th Eastercon 2018 – Follycon – website: https://www.follycon.org.uk/

Questionnaire Press Release

A questionnaire was open on the website during October 2015. We had 207
responses, about half from people who do not usually attend Eastercon
bidding sessions.

We took the results from the Questionnaire and presented them at a programme item at Novacon 45 (Nottingham, 13-15 November 2015). Pat McMurray, the Chair of Mancunicon, chaired the panel, and there were ~77 people in the audience. A spirited debate was had, we got an idea of what to do next, and we took volunteers’ names to help with doing it. I’ll post in more detail on all of that in due course.

Meanwhile:

  • We have 17 additional volunteers to take discussion forward – thank you everyone! – and more are always welcome
  • We were told off for not advertising the questionnaire widely enough, and told to reopen it – so we have done so and the link is open again on the website
  • We will post on our website both the presentation we made at Novacon, and the detailed data our thoughts were based on
  • We will be meeting on-line to work out how to take the conversation
    forward

This is a busy time of year for everyone, and we won’t be doing very much of this before Xmas. Please bear with us and we’ll come back with more in
January.

Please tell people the questionnaire is open again, and we’re happy for
people to print it off for people who can’t do it online. We’ll put a postal
address on the website for this purpose.

Everyone wants Eastercon to continue and thrive. We hope this conversation is helping.

We’d love comments on the website. Thanks for listening.

Novacon Presentation

https://eastercon.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/novacon-presentation.pdf