Katy Manning, Deborah Watling, & Sophie Aldred at Bedford Who Charity Con 2!

Bedford’s second charity Doctor Who convention is taking place on Saturday 23rd April – and The Doctor Who Companion readers can claim a 10% discount on their tickets! (See below for details.)

This year’s guests are Katy Manning, Deborah Watling, Sophie Aldred, Nick Briggs, Mike Tucker, John Leeson – and The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre.

Bedford Who Charity Cons are fairly new on the scene, but they’ve already established a reputation for being fun, relaxed and friendly. Feedback from both audiences and guests have been excellent. Sophie Aldred said the last one was a ‘truly lovely day’ with a ‘great atmosphere’; Mike Tucker said it was ‘a lovely, informal event.’ All profits will be donated to Bedford Foodbank. Each month, they provide emergency food for some 500 local children and adults who would otherwise go hungry.

It’s a good line-up. The day will be a mixture of panel interviews, signings, and the opportunity to chat to guests and to have your photo taken with them. Not everyone’s familiar with The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre: they’re an award winning comedy act from the Edinburgh Fringe and they’re also very, very funny. Check them out on YouTube. They’ll be giving us their take on Doctor Who. (They can be a little sweary but they’ve promised to be suitable for a family audience. Their Malcolm-Tucker-as-the-new-Doctor sketch won’t, alas, be part of their performance.) Mike Tucker’s going to be doing a presentation on how classic-Who icons were adapted and updated for nu-Who; he’s also bringing along a mystery prop which we’re not allowed to say anything about yet, but it’s really exciting! (As is usual with conventions, guests appear subject to their other work commitments.)

The immensely handsome Simon Mills, of The Doctor Who Companion, kindly agreed to be photographed with his adoring fans at Bedford Who Charity 1 in 2015. Left to right: John Leeson, Sophie Aldred, the great Simon Mills, Nicola Bryant, Anneke Wills and Terry Molloy.
The immensely handsome Simon Mills, of The Doctor Who Companion, kindly agreed to be photographed with his adoring fans at Bedford Who Charity 1 in 2015. Left to right: John Leeson, Sophie Aldred, the great Simon Mills, Nicola Bryant, Anneke Wills and Terry Molloy.

The basic ticket costs are £40 for adults, £20 for 14-18 year olds and full time students, and £15 for under-14s. If you mention when you book your tickets that you heard about the day through The Doctor Who Companion, you’ll receive a 10% reduction on the price!

Concessions and family tickets are also available; details are on the convention’s website (see below). Special rates are offered for group bookings, too, though you’ll need to email the event organiser (see below again!) for the rates. (This may especially appeal to university and college Doctor Who societies.)

It has to be said that the ticket rates are at the low end for Doctor Who cons, and they’re very good value. The organisers stress they’re not out to fleece you; the tickets give you access to all the events on the day. Guests will ask a fee for autographs, though, and if you’d like photos with the actors, a charity donation is asked for.

Bedford’s a small town in the south Midlands, about 50 miles north of London (and just 35 minutes from St Pancras). Communications are good: it’s just off the A1 and M1; good bus and coach links from Oxford and Cambridge and others; direct trains from Brighton, Nottingham, Loughborough and Leicester.

So, here are the details:

Bedford Who Charity Con 2

Saturday 23rd April 2016

10 a.m. to 5.30 p.m.

The King’s House,

245 Ampthill Road,

Bedford MK42 9AZ.

Email: info@bedfordwhocharitycon.co.uk

You can find out more over at the website, or give the convention a “like” on Facebook!

“I don’t know about you, young man, but I am going to visit that convention in Bedfordshire!”

Peter Cushing

* Peter Cushing as Dr Who. (Well, almost…)