Captain's blog. Stardate 23.05.2023
Between Belvoir and Blists Hill
Thank you to everyone who came and supported the MoS at Belvoir Castle for our first Steampunk Fairytale weekend. We had a magical time and hope that you did too. We had creatures in the woods between the carpark and the castle, and fairies in the formal gardens. We enjoyed wonderful performances outside the castle by the Cogkneys, Brass Brothers, Belly Fusion Dance Collective, Steampunk Sallys (and anyone else I've forgotten) and had the opportunity to take part in Teapot Racing. There were some fabulous large scale exhibits outside the castle and the already sumptuous interiors of the castle were made even more magical by the display of various steampunk fairytale characters and some wonderful felt creatures.
So far as we are aware nobody pricked their finger on the spinning wheel, but we have to report that Sleeping Beauty still hasn't woken up; maybe she will if we do it all again next year. Up in the ballroom we had a series of talks on Steampunk 101, historical costuming, tea duelling, a talk about a new feature film of The Hunting of the Snark and another on the Cottingley Fairies.
The Castle hosted the first Lewis Carroll Award for a fairytale themed creation and Alice Prudom was awarded the first of our new MoS Creativity Medals for her mixed media entry Alice in Steamland; see The Great Exhibition page under the Features tab.
Now the ministry are putting the final touches on our evening events for Asylum and working on the daytime programme for The Town That Never Was at Blists Hill Victorian Town next month; we hope to see many of you soon.
Captain's blog. Stardate 21.03.2023
Belvoir and Asylum tickets are on sale
Tickets for the Steampunk Fairytale Weekend at Belvoir Castle have been live for a while now. If you look on the Belvoir pages under the 'Fairytale' tab you will find directions on how to obtain a special discount off the adult weekend wristband price for Steampunks who are attending both days.
We have had a number of entries for the new Lewis Carroll award for the best fairytale themed piece of 2D or 3D artwork and are looking forward to seeing what you all create. It promises to be a close competition.
Just about all of our plans for Belvoir are now in place; the weekend promises lots of Steampunk fun but with a new Fairytale twist.
As the same time as finalising the Belvoir event we have been franticaly working on the Asylum. The daytime wristbands and merchandise are on sale now and in early April we hope to be able to release the evening event tickets - we just have a few final event details to sort out.
Whilst the framework of locations for the Asylum is now set there is still plenty of time to get involved with the event and you will find a number of ways that you can do just that under the 'Get Involved' tab above.
And did we mention Blists Hill? It has been in the MoS events list since before the last Asylum and rest assured we are also busy making plans for our return to the Town That Never Was this year - so watch this space...
Captain's blog. Stardate 04.02.2023
Steampunk Fairytale Weekend & Hulloween II news
Back from exhibiting at Megacon Dublin in January, The Ministry are now hard at work making plans for our next three events.
We have announced the new Carroll Award for a 2D or 3D piece of artwork to be awarded at the Fairytale Weekend and have had a number of expressions of interest already - if you check out the Carroll Award page and let us know you plan to enter, you could be the first person to win one of our new MoS medals; more details to follow.
The Steampunk Fairytale Weekend at Belvoir Castle on 13-14 May is taking shape nicely and ticket sales to Steampunks should be open very soon. We have a fairly packed programme of activities - lots are on the Fairytale page already, but we have more to add over the coming weeks.
We have also very recently had confirmation that we will be returning to Hull in October for Hulloween II. For many Steampunks Halloween is a very special time of year, so we have decided to hold Hulloween II over the weekend of 21-22 October - that way everyone can enjoy Hulloween one weekend in October and Halloween another - double the spookiness and excitement. We already have some very special plans for the Hulloween Ball on Saturday night - but we won't be revealing those for a few months yet.
Meanwhile we also continue to make plans for The Town That Never Was at Blists Hill over the weekend of 24-25 June and of course 'The Big One' - The Asylum at Lincoln over the August Bank Holiday weekend 25-28 August.
We are delighted to see so many other Steampunk events taking shape in other places and other times; it is wonderful that the Steampunk community have so many to choose from. We wish them all success and of course look forward to seeing as many of you as are able to attend one or more of The Ministry's events over the coming months.
Captain's blog. Stardate 17.12.2022
It's a wrap for 2022
The Ministry had a brilliant time at Weymouth - our second event in this beautiful seaside town and in the amazing Nothe Fort. Friday night started with a fashion show in collaboration with Weymouth College in order to raise money for Weldmare Hospicecare and was a great success. We were graced with a performance from Belly Fusion, had talks on how historical fashion inspires Steampunk creations and how to make some crazy outfits. Static pieces made by the Weymouth College students were on display, musical interludes were provided by Mark Williams and we enjoyed a wide range of outfits on the catwalk. All in all a brilliant evening.
Saturday at the Nothe Fort was similarly excellent with performances by Belly Fusion, the Brass Brothers, Weymouth Concert Brass and the inimitable Steampunk Sally's. Indoor attractions included a market, talks, teapot racing, tea duelling, lantern making and various other attractions. Without doubt the loudest event was the firing of the cannon by the artillary at the end of the day. We certainly ended the day with a BANG.
Sunday we assembled at the Jubilee clock, paraded to New Bond Street, enjoyed a further performance by Belly Fusion and there are rumours this was followed by an 'Illicit Market', but we can't confirm that.
Finally we had Steampunk Christmas Afternoon Teas at Nana Moon's and the Royal Hotel.
Pictures of all the above are on the Gallery page.
So what are we up to now? Well our main focus is on finalising arrangements for the Belvoir Castle Fairytale Weekend (13-14 May) but we're also keeping our eyes on and making plans for The Town That Never Was (24-25 June) and of course the Asylum Steampunk Festival (25-29 August).
We wish everyone a Happy Christmas and a Splendid New Year and look forward to catching up at an event some time soon.
Captain's blog. Stardate 17.11.2022
Betwixt Hulloween and Weymouth
The website has been live for a while now, during which time the Ministry have been to Hull for the new Hulloween Fesival over the weekend of 28-30 October and then to MCM Birmingham over the weekend of 11-13 November.
The website meanwhile has been clocking up views. To date 2,319 'unique visitors' have made a total of 3,465 visits to the site from a total of 42 countries.
As expected the majority of visitors are from the UK with USA second (90 visits), followed by Germany (26), New Zealand (18), Australia (16) and then China (15)!
Visitors are currently spending an average of 5m 38s on the site per visit.
58% of visits are from mobiles, 35% from desktops and 7% from tablets.
Very soon the MoS will be in Weymouth for the Steampunk Christmas Festival over the weekend of 2-4 December. The weekend will include a charity fashion show on Friday evening, a day of activities at the fabulous Nothe Fort on Saturday and then a Grand Parade, illicit market and opportunities to enjoy afternoon tea in Weymouth on the Sunday.
Plans are already taking shape for future events including the Fairytale Weekend at Belvoir Castle in May;
definitely a date for your diary.
The Ministry also continue to put on Steampunk exhibitions at MCM Comicons and Megacons - our most recent being Megacon in Manchester in July and MCM Birmingham in November. It's always nice to see fellow Steampunks at these events as we try to introduce Steampunk to comicon attendees.
We are starting to add gallery pages after each event and have added a page about the Great Exhibition and another about MoS medals. We are currently looking at how best to provide some kind of directory of traders. If you have other ideas for additional content you would like to see on the website please use the 'getting in touch' form.
Captain's blog. Stardate 29.09.2022
After sharing with Facebook friends and receiving invaluable feedback, adjustments have been made and the time has come to go live with the new Ministry of Steampunk website.
Captain's blog. Stardate 23.09.2022
Well on the way now. Most of the information is in place and hopefully visible on both PC/tablet and on mobile phone screens. There are still some 'forms' that need to be finished, but it will soon be time to release the website upon the unsuspecting steampunk world.
Captain's blog. Stardate 13.09.2022
Why build a new website?
Now that the Ministry of Steampunk (MoS) has developed a suite of recurring events we felt the time had come to develop a new website designed to operate year-round as a resource for steampunks, with pages devoted to event content, maps and links to tickets.
Like our previous website we will include portals that steampunks, performers, traders and others can use to get involved with our events, to suggest features, to offer to perform or trade or find out about volunteering. We intend also to use the website to store other useful information such as descriptions of regular or new features.
In due course we plan to add information about our exhibitions and possibly a gallery of images or videos taken at MoS events. But first we plan to start with the basics and see if we can make it work at an elementary level.
Will it ever be finished? Of course not! Steampunk is always a work in progress...