Sci-fi and fantasy come to the Winter Garden


Daleks, superheroes and comic book characters are set to descend upon Eastbourne this weekend as the town prepares to host its first ever WynterCon convention.

The sci-fi, fantasy, horror and alternative genre convention will take place from Friday, October 31 to Sunday, November 2 at the Winter Garden and will welcome some of the UK’s best comic book artists, as well as special guests including Red Dwarf star Robert Llewellyn and David Prowse MBE, who is best known for his role as Darth Vader.

Visitors will be able to venture round the comic book zone and classic horror and cult movie zone, while there will also be a table top and RPG gaming zone and art exhibition for people to enjoy.

An interactive Dr Who exhibit is expected to prove particularly popular while there will also be displays and demonstrations from some of science fiction’s best make-up artists and costume designers in the SFX make-up zone.

Other attractions running across the weekend include a laser quest arena, green screen and photographic booths, a series of talks and seminars and the UK’s largest certified collection of Blade Runner props and memorabilia.

The convention will put on a handful of special ‘one-night-only’ events, starting on Friday, October 31 when organisers will take over Eastbourne Pier for a science fiction masquerade Hallowe’en ball in Atlantis nightclub.

On Saturday, the Winter Garden will host a music night between 8pm and 1am, complete with a selection of live bands and DJs, while from 7pm the Curzon Cinema hosts a night of classic horror flicks.

Sunday night between 7pm and 11pm at the Winter Garden is the official wind down party – complete with a film screening of two cult classics.

An impressive list of special guests has been drafted for the event which includes two local men – Britain’s Got Talent finalist and ventriloquist Steve Hewlett, and Kai Zammit, a 26-year-old film-maker who will be promoting his short film Peacekeeper.

The 14-minute movie, which was viewed more than 5,500 times on YouTube in just one month, was written, directed and edited by Kai on a budget of just £200.

The film introduces viewers to a dark new world where police officers, called Peacekeepers, go to any lengths to stop crime happening in the city, so much so that they inflict their own justice.

Kai said, “I will be wearing the Peacekeeper suit at WynterCon and I encourage people to come up and talk to me, to find out more about the film and just to have a chat about filmmaking in Eastbourne.”

The event is raising money for a series of local charities, including St Wilfrid’s Hospice, Families for Autism and Stay Up Late, which is a charity that promotes full and active social lives for people with learning disabilities. There will be a charity auction running across the weekend to raise money for the three good causes.

WynterCon is expected to attract a sea of costumed conference-goers and hopes to become a permanent fixture on the Eastbourne tourism calender, offering something unlike any other event in the town. For more information or to buy tickets, visit