Filed under: About Thought Bubble, Programme 2016, Thought Bubble 2016 | Tags: Anime, art, Comics, entertainment, Graphic Novels, Manga
As we head towards this year’s festival (only a month away!) we thought it would be a good idea to update our visitor’s guide for 2016. If you’ve never joined us for a Thought Bubble before, or you’re returning for more comics fun and want to get more out of your trip to Leeds, then we hope the information below will be of help. We’ve also got a number of early ticket releases currently open for events, so you can find a quick summary below, before the full festival programme launches later this week.
We’ve been busy updating the guest pages for this year’s festival, with some brilliant creators for you to meet in Leeds this November (with over 100 guests now confirmed as attending), and we’ve also been updating the exhibitor icons on the site for 2016’s convention, which should be our biggest yet!
Convention exhibitor information can be found on the links below for:
Tickets are now on sale for this year’s Thought Bubble convention, taking place on the 5th and 6th November, and can be pre-purchased on our website or picked up in person from Travelling Man stores!
We’ve also opened up the ticket pre-sales for our Mid-con party, which this year is taking place from 7pm – 1am on Saturday 5th November, and we’ve full information on this, including details of our excellent new party venue right here on the blog.
Registration is now open for 2016’s Comics Forum academic conference, which takes place at Leeds Library on 3rd and 4th November. Full details of this, including how to register, can be found here.
Registration is also open for our free festival event, Creative Networks @ Leeds College of Art Present An Evening With Mike Mignola, where the legendary comics creator will be discussing his career with Richard Starkings. Spaces on this are filling up fast, so we’d recommend booking soon to avoid disappointment, and full event details can be found here.
- Getting to Leeds itself is relatively easy, both from within the UK and internationally, as regular rail services bring you into the heart of the city. Leeds rail station is about a 15 minute walk from the convention site, or about a 5 minute taxi ride, and there’s a taxi rank that’s constantly manned just outside the main station entrance.
- If you’re flying into Manchester airport then there’s a direct train every half hour that will bring you into Leeds station in around 1.5 hours.
- If you’re flying into one of London’s airports then you can catch a direct train from London Kings Cross to Leeds that will bring you into Leeds station in around 2.5 hours;
- If you’re driving into Leeds then there’s detailed instructions of how to get to the convention site here, including information on parking at the Royal Armouries’ museum, which is attached to the convention square. Please be aware that Leeds has a slightly tricky one-way system, so it’s best to allow for some extra time when setting off;
- If you’re getting the bus into the city, then the convention site is serviced by a number of routes, full details of which can be found here.
The official hotel partner for this year’s convention is the Radisson Blu which is located in Leeds city centre, and is about a 20 minute walk from the convention site. The hotel is a 5 minute walk from the rail station, and close to central bus routes in the city.
Free water taxis run on the weekend which will take you from the city centre to the convention site at Leeds Dock in approximately 10 minutes. More information on the water taxis can be found here – please note, the water taxis are weather permitting, and may not be operating if the river levels are too high.
Leeds itself is a fairly compact city to get around, and you can walk from the top part of town (the university areas on Woodhouse Lane) down to the convention centre on Leeds Dock in around 50 minutes. If you need any supplies while you’re in town, then the shopping district can be found clustered around The Headrow and Albion street, with a large shopping mall at Trinity Leeds on Boar Lane (the site of this year’s Mid-Con party). There are also a number of convenience stores located around the convention square, but they can tend to sell out of a lot of essential items quickly on the convention weekend.
The convention – 10 important points:
- This year’s convention takes place on the weekend of November 5th & 6th, and set up for exhibitors runs from 7.30am on Saturday 5th, with doors opening to the public at 10am and closing at 5pm on both days;
- Tickets will be available for purchase on the day of the convention, but this may involve some queueing, and your convention wristband will get you into all events taking place at the Leeds Dock sites (including panels and screenings) – your wristband can be picked up from the ticket desks at the convention on the day (just bring along your booking email or physical ticket to exchange);
- Venue information for 2016’s events can be found here, and all listings in the festival programme include the individual event’s locations (including postcodes where appropriate) and timings;
- We’d recommend bringing some warm/waterproof clothing, as Leeds can be quite chilly in November, and there are open spaces between the three convention halls;
- All venues at the convention are wheelchair accessible, and baby changing facilities are available in the Royal Armouries Museum (which has free entry);
- We’d recommend bringing a decent amount of cash (especially change) with you, as the nearby cash-points can run out during the weekend, and our supply is generally taken up with handling on-the-door ticket sales – also, exhibitors will love you if you can pay with exact change;
- We currently cannot offer on-site storage at the convention, so while we don’t impose limits on the number of items people can bring to be signed, please be aware that you’ll need to be able to carry them with you all day, along with any purchases that are made at the event;
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help, as our red-shirted volunteers will be happy to assist you in anything you need during the weekend;
- A simple one, but an important one – keep hydrated and remember to make time to eat as well, low blood sugar and dehydration can make even the simplest of tasks a lot more daunting, so be sure to look after yourself during the convention;
- The most important aspect of any convention is to have fun – Thought Bubble is an extremely friendly show, and we aim to cater to a wide spectrum of attendees, many of whom may be attending a show like this for the first time, so we ask that:
- attendees treat each other, including exhibitors, guests, and volunteers, with respect;
- anyone wishing to take photographs or film at any Thought Bubble events please ask the subjects before doing so.
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