This past Sunday I attended Hull Comic Con Summer 2017, which was held at The Lawns in Cottingham. The event, by District14, had, as ever, lots of stuff going on. There were plenty of stalls with many traders showcasing some fantastic items, from custom Lego minifigs to huge, original artworks. The whole place was chock full of people in cosplay, from the simplest to the elaborate, but all paying tribute to people's favourite characters.
Previously, the Spring event had been held at the Guildhall in the town centre. That venue was larger, but had its own drawbacks, such as the lack of decent parking nearby. The Lawns was a good place to host the event, but there were some downsides. The place was jammed full of traders, and whilst it's great to have so much variety for sale, it meant that there was little room to move around the floor. Some tables were laid out in such a way that it created dead ends, and the special guest tables were almost pushed into a corner without any space for fans to really interact with them.
There was plenty for people to go for, however. For kids there were bouncy castles, inflatable pugilism, live parrots (with accompanying pirates), drawing tables upstairs and workshops from some of the guests. There was a retro gaming area with some classic consoles available for all to play. There was a large outdoor area, so people could comfortably take a break from the crowds inside, get something to eat from the outdoor food vendors, or have their picture taken. There were also events throughout the day such as the cosplay contest for people to showcase their outfits.
Speaking of cosplay, I, for the first time, attended in costume. Whilst not very elaborate, it was outside of my usual comfort zone. The environment at the con was one where anyone was welcome, whether costumed or not; everyone was there for a singular purpose – to celebrate their fandom, for films, games, anime, comics, and everything else. If you're hesitant about taking that leap and dressing up, know that the other guests are all going to support that.
Overall I would say that the venue itself has potential, but the use of space could do with some thought. The variety and standard of the traders was top notch all round, and the side events dotted around were great fun for all. If you've not been before, take time to pop along next time. Even if you don't buy anything, you're bound to come away with a good feeling.