Convention Memories – ‘Big Blue Box 2’

Hello everyone! 🙂

Welcome to ‘Bradley’s Basement’ blog and I’m Tim Bradley!

It’s time for another ‘convention memories’ blog post by me today and I’m sharing my memories of the first convention I attended in 2013 for the 50th anniversary of ‘Doctor Who’. And it’s also the first convention that I ever attended to not have Sarah Sutton there. I know! How shocking is that?!

Actually, Sarah was meant to be there originally as well as Gary Russell, I believe. But Sarah couldn’t make it due to family commitments, which is fair. I was still looking forward to seeing Sarah later that year for the show’s 50th anniversary as she had been announced for other conventions in 2013.

In the meantime, let’s talk about my memories of ‘Big Blue Box 2’. This convention took place at the Trinity Theatre in Tunbridge Wells on Saturday the 16th of March 2013. It was an all-day event from 10:45am to 7:15pm.  It had lots happening at the event such as panel talks, signings, stalls and more.

The event was also supporting a local charity for disabled people called Compaid. I remember a short video being played before the event took place during the ‘welcome’ ceremony. I found how compelling the event was and around this point, I had plenty of experience attending conventions. 🙂

There were plenty of guests to see including people from Big Finish like producer David Richardson, director Ken Bentley and director John Ainsworth. There was also Richard Franklin, Louise Jameson, Dan Starkey, Nicholas Pegg and Toby Hadoke who did his stand-up show ‘My Stepson Stole my Sonic Screwdriver’ at the event. I didn’t get to meet every guest at the event, but it was good to see them.

I attended many of the panel talks at the event. This included ‘Secrets from the Doctor Who archive’ with Mark Ayres and Richard Bignell as well as the ‘Destiny of the Doctor’ panel with Richard Franklin, writer Andrew Smith, director John Ainsworth and producer Michael Stevens, which I greatly enjoyed. ‘Vengeance of the Stones’ had only just been out on CD at the time of this event. 😀

I also saw a screening of two short films by the Guerrier brothers – Simon and Thomas, including ‘The Plotters’ and ‘Revealing Diary’ featuring stars like Ciara Janson and Laura Doddington from ‘The Key 2 Time’ and ‘Graceless’ audios by Big Finish. I enjoyed seeing those films as they were very thrilling and surreal.

I soon went to have some things signed by some of the guests, including Richard Franklin, who I had a photo with and he signed my ‘Vengeance of the Stones’ CD cover for me. This was the very first time I ever met Richard Franklin, who played Mike Yates, at a convention and he was nice to talk to.

After that, I went to see a panel talk with Simon Fisher-Becker, who played Dorium Maldovar in ‘Doctor Who’, and Dan Starkey, who played the Sontarans in ‘Doctor Who’. After that, I went to see a Dalek panel talk that featured Cy Town and Nicholas Pegg, two Dalek operators from the TV show.

There was then a live debate on whether ‘Doctor Who’ was having a mid-life crisis with writers Will Howells and Jonathan Morris as well as Simon Fisher-Becker. There were then some more signings as I got to see Nicholas Pegg and Dan Starkey and had a photo with them at the event, which was great.

Once that was done, there was a writers’ panel with Nigel Fairs, Simon Guerrier and Andrew Smith. I got to meet Simon Guerrier and Andrew Smith later on during the day and had a nice chat with them. Simon signed my ‘Shadow of Death’ CD cover and Andrew signed my ‘Vengeance of the Stones’ CD cover. I especially got some nice writing tips from Andrew Smith whilst chatting to him. 🙂

There was then a ‘Doctor Who’ auction. I managed to get a signed script of ‘The Haunting of Thomas Brewster’ from Sarah Sutton at the auction, which is great to have. Jonny Morris signed the script for me too at the event and I got to chat to him during the day. I would like to do a novelization of ‘The Haunting of Thomas Brewster’ sometime soon. I still have ‘The Prison of Thomas Brewster’ to write! 😀

There was then a companion panel with Louise Jameson, who played Leela, in the series. I got to meet Louise at a signing session during the day as well as have a photo with her. The convention concluded with Toby Hadoke’s stand-up show ‘My Stepson Stole my Sonice Screwdriver’, which I greatly enjoyed. I even got to chat to Toby Hadoke at the end of the day before I left the convention.

‘Big Blue Box 2’ was a nice day out at a convention in Tunbridge Wells back in March 2013. I missed seeing Sarah Sutton there, but I’m glad I got something out from the event by purchasing ‘The Haunting of Thomas Brewster’ script at the convention. It was also good to see the guests there too.

Overall, a good start to the ‘Doctor Who’ 50th celebrations for me in terms of conventions.

Stay tuned for my next ‘convention memories’ blog post, which will be on the ‘celebrate 50 – The Peter Davison Years’ event in Chiswick, London, April 2013.

Thanks for reading!

Bye for now!

Tim. 🙂


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