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Birmingham Day One

Hapilly bunkered in a coffee shop deep in the heart of the Green Zone, so blogging can re-commence.

Firstly, this - rather pitifully - is my first vistit to England's second city, presuming that a brief visit to friends in Solihull some years back doesn't really count, and neither does admiring Fort Dunlop from the motorway.

Anyway, that a train from Euston to Birmingham New Street takes 135 minutes is pretty poor. Presumably there are faster trains at other times of the day, but that is no real advance in speed in the thick end of a hundred years. Figure to be confirmed at some point.

The conference venue is a good deal more modern - if not offering free wi-fi - than the Blackpool Winter Gardens, but does lack the character of the former. Also, unlike Blackpool the conference centre and conference hotel form a single green zone, so those who fancy it and have the money can stay within a sort of enclosed resort,Club Mediterranee-style. Club Conservateur, maybe? I don't think they let you pay with beads. Similarly, the venue lacks a central focus for milling and plotting, leaving you with the dread feeling that something more interesting must be happening just around the corner. This being PT's patch, it has proved well-nigh impossible to amble for more than five minutes without him spotting one of his local confederates.

Not much chance to hear much by way of speakers as yet, although I do feel for the poor fellow at a fringe event (event name witheld out of sense of basic propriety) whose rather long winded question to the panel seemed to spark a run on the doors.

Anyway, gossip and the like:

Nameless PPC - "Anyone who wants to be an MEP should be taken outside and shot".

The YBF bash yesterday - outside the Green Zone - was marked by an outbreak of thefts from jackets and so forth. Not, I hasten to add, by YBFers

More later.

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Blogger Blue Eyes said... 3:55 pm

Say hello to Mr PT for me!  



Anonymous Neil Reddin said... 3:11 pm

No free WiFi - so the ICC's website is lying!

Pleased I didn't lug the laptop in this morning then (laptop - old fashioned blogging method I know!)  



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