The Guildhall Trust and GoGeek Events spread some joy ahead of this year's Con!

Ahead of Portsmouth Comic Con – International Festival of Comics, which returns to Portsmouth Guildhall on Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th May following a sell-out inaugural event in 2018, the ‘Get Involved’ team of The Guildhall Trust and GoGeek Events have been out and about in the community to spread the word, the science behind comics and also the joy ahead of this year’s event.

Announced as a partner for this year’s Comic Con and host of the Carnival of Cosplay stage, GoGeek Events are renowned for encouraging diversity and inclusivity, and it is with these shared values and the vision to transform lives that the two organisations are working together to engage the community and create a Comic Con that is fully welcoming and accessible to all.

In an introduction to the world of comics for young people, The Guildhall Trust teamed up with local illustrator and cartoonist, Russell Mark Olson, who has delivered creative workshops within a number of the region’s schools to show pupils how comics are put together. Exploring the use of words and images, over 380 pupils from Beaconview Primary school, Gatcombe Park Primary School, Upham Primary School, Lyndhurst Junior School and Langstone Junior School were inspired to let their imaginations run wild and create their own superheroes under the guidance of Olson who himself will be exhibiting at the May Bank Holiday weekend event with his own Gateway City comic series.

Ahead of Easter weekend, the Trust and GoGeek Events with Portsmouth Hospitals Charity took a taste of Comic Con to those who may not be well enough to attend on the day. Brightening the day of youngsters on the Children’s Wards of QA Hospital, a selection of superheroes, including Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and an Ewok, spent time with the children and their families, delivering sweet treats for them to enjoy which were kindly donated by Tesco Superstore, Fareham.

During the event itself, working with a number of the region’s schools for pupils with special needs, Portsmouth Comic Con has invited pupils and their families to attend a ‘Quiet Hour’ when the event is not open to the rest of the public so that they may experience and enjoy the Con in a calmer and quieter environment with GoGeek Cosplay Icons on hand for the children to meet.

Hayley Reay, Learning & Participation Manager of The Guildhall Trust, and Mark Hendley, Director of GoGeek Events, said, “It has been great to really have some fun with comics and superheroes, and to use this to engage with children and schools in our region to extend the delight of the Comic Con and develop creative writing skills. Portsmouth Comic Con is a completely family-friendly event and we are keen to develop more ideas like the Quiet Hour that will make it even more accessible to all.”

Portsmouth Comic Con brings the best of comic, film, TV and pop culture entertainment featuring some of the best comic artists from across the world with a full programme of panels, displays, cult series characters and props, workshops and entertainment including VR, motion capture, robots, retro and board gaming and a Comic City of comics, art, prints, crafts, toys, collectables and merch.

A sell out event in 2018, people are advised to get their tickets now to avoid disappointment at or 0844 847 2362 (calls cost 7p per minute + phone company access charge).

For further announcements follow @PortsmouthComicCon on Facebook or sign up online to receive e-newsletters.

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