The inaugural Dunfermline Comic Con was held on Saturday 5 March 2016 in the Glen Pavilion within the grounds of the picturesque Pittencrieff Park in the Scottish town’s centre. Organised by the town’s sole comic shop, Little Shop Of Heroes, the event sold out the last of its 2500 tickets the week before. While that meant that there was no walk in tickets for the curious on the day, it made for a bustling atmosphere inside the surprisingly large venue.
Despite a chilly morning, and being guaranteed entry, ticket holders were queuing for about an hour before the doors open time of 10am and while many cosplayers were in the queue there appeared to be more lycra evident on the park’s resident Saturday morning runners and joggers. Once they were in both they and the venue warmed up quickly. The large main hall, complete with enormous balloon snowflakes hanging from the ceiling(!), had the majority of sales tables plus all the guests’ tables arranged along opposite sides giving them plenty of natural light.
The smaller hall had the rest of the sales tables plus the photo opportunities with a Dalek, Tardis and a David Tennant Doctor on the one side and an authorised replica of the Iron Throne from Game Of Thrones on the other.
These plus the Star Wars cosplayers, and their remarkable Chewbacca, were the undoubted hits with the crowds yet they did not appear to distract the public from spending a lot of money at the sales tables.
Doctor Who was definitely one of the themes of the day with guests Mike Collins having worked on the TV series as well as Panini, BBC and IDW Who comics while Neil Slorance and Colin Bell have the new Titan Who comics to their credit and, remarkably, the event had its own exclusive Titan Eleventh Doctor variant cover by Neil Slorance showing the Doctor and the Tardis in front of Dunfermline Abbey which was only five minutes’ walk from the venue.
Other guests included Yishan Li who had a seemingly unending queue for her manga portraits, Death Sentence writer and cover artist Monty Nero, 2000AD and Starblazer artist Colin MacNeil, Saltire artist Claire Roe, and Commando (and Starblazer and Eagle and Warlord and Battle and 2000AD and Starlord and Blake’s 7 Monthly and many, many more) artist Ian Kennedy who as well has having Commandos on his table also was selling copies of the RAF Leuchars Air Show brochures and posters that he painted back in the 1980s and 1990s.
For a first time con in a venue and town unused to comics events, Dunfermline Comic Con was a resounding success for the Little Shop Of Heroes team of Alby, Lou and Sinéad and their volunteers. Given that it was a sell-out prior to opening, and that there isn’t an obviously larger venue in the town, it would seem like the only way to expand any sequel event would be to make it two days long.
There are more details of the Dunfermline Comic Con on the event’s Facebook page including many more photographs taken on the day.
The event was well covered by the local Dunfermline Press newspaper.