Sunday, 11 September 2016

#MAEG2016 was a success - Onwards and upwards for 2017

On the 13th August this year a new style of author book signing took place in Manchester. The event took place at a mining Museum, on the outskirts of Manchester in two marquees.

The main marquee measured 27 x 12 metres and the second smaller one encompassed the beer tent. The day began with breakfast being provided to the attending authors, assistants and the amazing volunteers we had on the day.

I have to admit there were a few glitches, as we provided a variety of breakfasts, including vegan, and vegetarian options, alongside gluten free. But everyone was fed and watered, and set up to greet the readers, who had bought tickets in anticipation of meeting the amazing variety of genre at the event.

The site for this event was the Astley Green Colliery. This is a mining museum extraordinaire, as the largest engine in Europe resides in the huge winding house, and was run on the day to celebrate. The pithead is the only remaining pit head in Lancashire, ( I am reliably informed) and the setting is going to improve over time, due to the hardworking volunteers and members there. 

The museum occupies some fifteen acres of the Astley Green Colliery site. To the south lies the Bridgewater Canal and Astley Moss, an important moss land site. The low-lying landscape ensures that the museum's 98ft high lattice steel headgear can be seen for many miles, a fitting memorial to days now past.
Apart from the steam winding engine and headgear, the museum houses many exhibits, not least of which is the collection of 28 colliery locomotives, the largest collection of its type in the United Kingdom.
The colliery began its life in 1908 to exploit coal reserves in the south Lancashire Coalfield. Had it not been for the increasing demand for coal, at that time, the project would not have been viable. The coal seams at Astley Green are very deep and overlain by 100 feet of wet and unstable ground. These factors made the sinking of the shaft a very expensive proposition. The novelty of many of the requirements tested the ingenuity of the engineers during the construction, so much so that a paper, on the sinking of the shaft, was presented to the Institute of Mining Engineers. The colliery had a lifespan of only 62 years, finally closing its gates in 1970. Because of its short and relatively recent history, a considerable number of written and photographic records have survived. This has enabled a detailed study to be made of the construction of the colliery and its subsequent operation.

The museum is now run and maintained, on behalf of the community, by the Red Rose Steam Society Limited, a registered charity based in Lancashire. The museum was open that day to both readers, authors and guests alike and without exception they loved the setting. A photographers dream.

Readers turned up, and were pleasantly surprised by both the venue, food and drink and also the evening entertainment. The advantage of being on the outskirts of Manchester included the free parking at the venue, and the much cheaper prices for accommodation nearby.

The weather was extremely kind to us, and stayed bright and warm throughout the day, and evening.

Excitement was palpable as everyone set up their stalls and waited to see the first readers arrive. Although this wasn't the busiest event I have attended myself, it made up for that in the relaxed atmosphere, and everyone got a chance to talk to all the authors and models attending on the day. 

Proof of how well received this signing was received is evidenced by the fact that so many of the authors attending that day, have also signed up and confirmed for next year. Next year is set to run over at least two days, with the possibility of a third evening with additional gig on the Friday. This is to to run on the 19-20th August 2017 at the same venue.

As previously stated, this event include a number of genre which allowed readers to meet and greet a lot of new authors and this worked brilliantly well.

The lessons learnt at this event will be used to bring readers, and authors a better experience with each successive year. As a result the pricing structure will be very different, and much cheaper than others, but with good reason. I want the events to be driven by the readers, so, by reducing the cost for readers to attend, this will enable them to have more funds available in order to buy books, and also pay for accommodation locally.

After due consideration I am intending to charge £5 for either a morning, or an afternoon ticket for readers, and £9.00 for all day, with the gig in the evening #FREE to attend.

This time the food will once again be fairly priced and a bar will be open from midday until close after the gig on the Saturday evening. Likewise on the Friday evening.

Sandwiches and cakes will be available to buy with teas, coffee, fruit and green tea. Catering once again to vegetarians, vegans and with gluten free.

The evening will again be catered by a BBQ and side dishes provided to buy also.
The event is set to go over two days and, with possibly a gig on the Friday evening. The friday will be #FREE to attend. Families will also be able to attend the gigs in the evening.

Volunteers will be able to attend for #FREE with an official t-shirt as a souvenir keep your eyes peeled for the sign up forms out very soon for 2017.

We also had a launch of a different kind, as a lager was launched at the event too.

The lager is produced by a local firm and proved an unmitigated success. With some saying it was the best they had ever tasted. One to recommend and we will be having this on cask again at next years event.

The lager is Skuna, which is an artisan lager and with the luxury refrigerated units, provided ice cold lager throughout the afternoon and evening. The guys that provided the lager were a great bunch. You can find the details here for this fantastic lager

I will be posting some more photos in the next blog post as we have literally hundreds of fantastic pictures of the day and night in Manchester.

Come and join the Manchester Facebook Group to keep up to date with the 2017 event. We already have thirty-one confirmed authors lined up and waiting for next year.

The authors that attended the 2016 event were 

Alice Raine
Amanda Green
Bella Settarra
C.A. Bell
Caroline Batten
C.L. Bentham
Christoph Fischer
Claire C. Riley
D.A Lascelles
D.M. Midgley
Elena Matthews
Elisabeth Marrion
Gary Edward Gedall
Glenn Haigh 
Glynn Holloway
Hayley Oakes
H J Daly
Holly J Gill
Iain Parke
Isobelle Cate
J F Holland
J.L. Ostle
Jules Godfrey
K A Hobbs
K L Shandwick
Karen Frances
Laura Morgan / L.C Morgan
Lavinia Urban
Martin Tracey
Morton Morelli
Neil Winnington
Nikiki Ashton
Olga NΓΊΓ±ez Miret
Samantha Harrington
Scarlett Flame
S E Marley-Walton
Simon Clarke
Simon Parker
Stevie Turner
TL Wainwright
Victoria Blisse
Victoria Howard
Victoria Johns
Victoria L. James
Zak Jane Keir

Attending Models were

Attending Models
Matt Stobbs
Alex Jordan Devenport
Vickie Wood
Erin Urban
Stefan Northfield
Jack Dutton

Artists participating were:

The Reveurs
Joe Symes and The Loving Kind
Mog Stanley
Vickie Wood 

This is the link to the interest form for authors for 2017. This is a UK based signing, but we welcome authors from around the globe.

Prices for tables will remain the same as this year but, with an additional free day available on the Sunday.

We already have 43 confirmed signing authors for 2017, three models and two acts for the evening secured. 

Once again we will be supporting Mind and Pegasus Explorer Scout Troup in Astley.

We also have an interest for for 2018 here 

AND 2019 here 

Come and join our Facebook group for updates on Manchester events 

Love n Stuff



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