Mark Your Calendars: Comic Cons In The UK This Fall

by Olly MacNamee

With the comic con season in America winding down, over here in the UK things start getting going again as we all face shorter days and longer nights. Here’s a rundown of the cons on the horizon happening across the land.

September 1st -2nd 
NICE Bedford
With no show last year, I imagine there will be a lot of interest in this one with an enviable list of comic creators including Don McGregor (Black Panther), Donny Cates (Cosmic Ghost Rider), Jorge Jimenez (Justice League) and Alan Davis (Captain Britain). A con focussed squarely on comics and comic book creators, this year it will be held over two days at the Bedford Corn Exchange.
For more details, check in here.

September 15th
ICE – Birmingham
CovCon – Coventry
Two shows, and just within spitting distance of one another too. First up, Birmingham’s International Comics Expo (ICE), another purely comic-related event held, once again after last year’s successful show, at the relatively newly renovated Holiday Inn above the UK’s oldest comic shop, Nostalgia and Comics and in the heart of the city centre. This year’s guests include Alan Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra (co-creators of Judge Dredd) and Laura Howell, Lew Stringer and Nigel Parkinson all on hand to celebrate The Beano’s 80th, as well as overseas guest such as Rodney Ramos.
Read more on ICE here.
Down the road in Coventry we have CovCon which is a mix of both media guests and comic book creators. I’ll hold my hands up now and admit to being an organising member for this year’s event, and to try and differentiate ourselves from ICE, we’ve managed to haul in the creative team behind last year’s Titan comic book series, Anno Dracula, including horror expert and novelist behind the hugely successful Anno Dracula books, Kim Newman, making his only UK appearance at our show. Once again, it’ll be held at the Sports Connexion complex in Ryton. Along for the ride are creators Simon Myers (Doctor Who), Paul McCaffrey and Titan comic’s editor David Leach, amongst others.
Read about CovCon’s guest and amenities here.

September 22nd – 23rd
Thought Bubble – Leeds
MCM Scotland – Glasgow
The jewel in Thought Bubble’s week-long list of events, the Thought Bubble weekend long con has fast become a Mecca for comic book fans across the country and this year should be no different with guest including Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie bringing their immersive The Wicked + The Divine theatrical experience with him, and the likes of Warren Ellis (Wildstorm), Victoria Ying (Disney) and Leslie Hung (Snotgirl).
Read more about the different events for Thought Bubble here.
Further north, in Scotland, and MCM have their own weekend show, with big name media guests and, since Reed Pop’s buy-out, more impressive comic book guest too. Glasgow sees writer Brian Azzarello appearing alongside the usual assortment of dead cast members form The Walking Dead. a family friendly show and one that has seen The Comics Village grow, evolve and benefit, I think, form Reed Pop’s presence.
For more on this show, click here.

October 12th – 14th
Lakes International Comic Art Festival – Kendal
Taking over the picturesque, historical town of Kendal, in the Lake District, Lakes International Comic Festival – the people behind the UK’s Comics Laureate – have another great line-up of comic book professionals in attendance. Charlie Adlard (The Walking Dead) will be on hand and maybe passing on his Comics Laureate crown after two years in on the throne, alongside others guests including Robbie Morrison (2000AD) and Joe Kelly (Deadpool).
For the full one up and further details list their website here.

October 26th – 28th
MCM London
This is their big one with Frank Miller (The Dark Knight Returns) in attendance (and at an exorbitant price if you want a VIP meeting with the guy) as well as another appearance from Brian Azzarello too. That and a huge amount of media guests from TV and screen which I know always guarantees a big attendance.
For more on this London show, check it out here.
November 24th – 25th 
MCM Birmingham
Capping off a very busy Fall schedule of shows, MCM return for other second show of the year in Birmingham and bringing with them, David Morrissey (The Governor from The Walking Dead) and Sherilyn Fenn (Twin Peaks). No details on any comic book creators, but with the appearance of David Finch (Batman) earlier this year, I hoping an announcement will be made nearer the date.
As one of the last shows of the year, its also a great place to pick up some Christmas shopping come the Sunday, too. After all, who wants to take back huge amounts of stock, so look out for the odd bargain or two as prices start getting slashed come the afternoon.
You can keep up to date on happenings for Birmingham here.
Of course, there are a few other shows dotted around the country, but they don’t, as yet, have any confirmed comic book guests so on this occasion they didn’t make the list. 
Looks like a busy few months for comic book fans. And, with three weekends taken up by cons in September alone, I’ll be bushed by October and ready to hibernate for the winter.

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