Email 15th January 2009

Fish 2009 - Convention 2009

Dear FishHeads, Freaks, fans and the Company,

After much deliberation, consultation and phone calls to venues etc I have decided that the Convention 2009 will be held at Leamington Spa Assembly Rooms on the weekend of August 8th and 9th.

There were a couple of other runners but after discussing the options it was obvious that the Assembly Rooms and the town provided everything we were looking for.

It's a 1000 capacity venue only open just over 6 months ago with a cracking PA and Light spec.
It has bars, seated areas in the balcony, great backstage facilities and sits in a beautiful park between two rivers just off the town centre. It's very central to a number of areas and has easy access by road (3 miles off Junction 14 of the M40) and rail with a direct link from Birmingham International airport less than 25 minutes away and direct links to all major cities.
The station is 2 minute walk away from the venue.

It's a small town with lots of pubs, history, amenities and accommodation and the possibility of endless fun. ;-)
You can find out more here where you can get a virtual tour of the venue and a better idea of the locale.

It's early stages in the planning and I know some of you have offered to help out with "on the ground" support which is very welcome.
I'll be going down to recce in the next couple of weeks to get a better idea of what we can put together to add to the event but I can say that Planet Rock are on board and that I have the full band on line.

In the coming weeks I'll get more information to you and should be able to name the two support bands for the weekend plus some special guests.

I can say that I intend to take on board "Hippy Dave's" poll (Thanks BTW Dave, really interesting ;-)) and want to utilise a full performance of "13th Star" and "Misplaced" together with a return of some old favourites over the two shows I have planned.
"Incubus", "Script", "Fugazi" and some others will come back into the fold from the Marillo period and "Vigil", "Credo" and other gems will come into the solo performances.

I am looking at a possible acoustic session and Chris Johnson may be putting in a set from his new album.
I'm planning to have full back projections across the two nights and put together a dynamic overall production that we haven't had for a while.
I can tell you that Sunday will be a long day! ;-)

There are a lot of possibilities to be examined and I am sure this could turn out to be the best one yet with your support.

Thanks for all your suggestions and input on this. I have to say Lincoln and Stroud were attractive but in the end Leamington met everything I was looking for. It stood out so much that I decided to forego the vote and go ahead and book the venue.

I know some of you will be disappointed at the convention moving from Haddington but with the Corn Exchange toilets being rebuilt and nothing else changing in the venue itself to make it more attractive (despite my suggestions) combined with the lack of accommodation in the area as well as travel and other factors, moving to somewhere more central with better international access made sense.
It is by no means the end of the Haddington convention, and I am sure the convention will return here again, but this year I have decided to try another direction.

It's going to be a lot of work in planning and organising the event and a lot of homework and rehearsing in July (at least 2 weeks of full band up here to get us up to speed as some of the guys will have to learn material from scratch).

I have no doubt that it will all come together in the coming months and we will have a convention to remember in August.

Tickets for the two nights of performance and other events over the weekend will be £55 and will be on sale from the end of April.
For those of you who want to reserve tickets we will set up an advance ordering system which will enable us to contact you when they do go on sale.

Once again thanks for your enthusiasm and input into this idea and I'll be in touch when I know more about the details.

lots of Love
Onkel Fish xxx

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