Alan Flyng

Alan Flyng

Sunday, 3 July 2011

Sci Fi South Collectors - July 2, 2011 at Eastleigh, Southampton.

Due to the fact that I have been working on a film, I was unable to travel down and stay the night before, so Pam Rose and myself drove down on the day in record time. I was up at 3.30 a.m., in order to shift the old carcass through the shower and get the first train to Victoria, where I had arranged with Pam to meet. My grateful thanks to Pam for her fantastic driving and cheerful company, as always!

On arrival. we bumped immediately into David Tarrant, the organiser of the event, who dropped everything to conduct us through two large halls to our tables and set his helpers to look after us with food and drinks. Much appreciated indeed David - thank you!

David Tarrant and pilot.

As the doors opened, a flood of people came through and the main hall was soon teeming with visitors! There was an excellent selection of traders and the Milton Keynes Garrison of the 501st and the Galactic Knights were also in attendance, with many other droid owners and costumed characters. Of course, the kids were in seventh heaven with so much to see and I felt slightly sorry for the parents and their wallets! LOL

Peter Roy and the swelling crowds. Colin Baker beyond Peter.

Pam was presented with an Honorary membership certificate by the Milton Keynes Garrison and Kay Power Mcgowan, on her first signing ever, was kept hard-pressed by collectors and fans alike! I knew you would enjoy it Kaye! :)

Pam receiving her certificate from the MKG and Ted Western signing beyond.

The only point detracting from the event was the heat in the hall, due mainly to such a press of flesh - I am sure that better air-con would have made it more comfortable for all attending. But, that in itself is testimony to the popularity of the show!
The solar-powered waving Queen I had first shown in Stockholm came again to display her support of the 501st, but unfortunately I couldn't find her original helmet, so a substitute had to be found - a tad large, but you have to admit that she's a trooper! LOL
I had great fun chatting with the kids and their parents, as well as the fans and other guests. One young man who made an impression was a lad called Willis Clarke! He was full of enthusiasm and his Mum was dead proud of him, as he had been featured singing on, a charity for disadvantaged children. He and his brother found their way to every guest's table and got them to sign their toy lightsabres and, of course, walked away with many free photos signed! :) Great kids and a credit to their Mum!

David and his helpers were very solicitous and we were looked after handsomely. I managed to get a brief overview as I walked back from signing David's Millennium Falcon for him in the 2nd hall after lunch, where many of the static exhibits were to be found, including the Tardis, the Back to the Future DeLorean, a NY PD police car and the General Lee from Dukes of Hazard. There was also a reptile exhibit with some very pampered lizards! LOL.

Back into the main hall I turned on the camera again to catch the line-up of guests I passed on the way to my own table - and this but one side of the hall!!!

As the day progressed, many of the guests got up and took the chance to wander and see what was occurring. I had a visit from Dave Prowse in his wheelchair after surgery, who was looking very chirpy and happy to be back with the fans. It was such a pleasure to see him free fro pain at last! Jeremy Bulloch stopped by to talk to me about my forthcoming trip to Dallas and the Star Wars Fan Days Con organised by Ben Stevens and Official Pix and. There were interviews being conducted with guests for the organiser's website and when it came to Barrie Holland's turn, Richard Bonehill came over frequently as he was timing Barrie in his effusive talk, offering the loud and cheery advice that the camera was losing the light! Nothing phased Barrie, though! As I have said before - a consumate professional! :)

So, a hearty congratulations to David and his team for putting on a bigger and even better event than last year, with a great atmosphere and laughter! The fans will look forward to and flock to the next, without any doubt!!!