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Bicon 2003 > Why Come? > BiCon History

BiCon History

Way back in December 1984 the London Bisexual Group (in association with the magazine 'Bi-Monthly') ran a conference called "The Politics of Bisexuality" at The Factory Community Project in Highbury. Around 40 people braved the icy weather to attend and judged the event to be a huge success. A second was planned and in April 1985 over fifty people attended. Unfortunately the venue used - the London Lesbian and Gay Centre - had just decided to ban bisexuals (and some other groups) from their premises. This did not stop the conferences (and the ban was reversed before the LLGC was closed).

"people were starting to know what they wanted from BiCon - a chance to meet other bisexuals"

The Edinburgh Bisexual Group took up the torch and ran an event called "Bisexuality and the Politics of Sex" that very October at the Pleasance Student Centre. This established the idea of the conferences moving about. The next was run by the London Bisexual Women's Group and was called "BiCon 4". By now people were starting to know what they wanted from BiCon - a chance to meet other bisexuals (and their allies) from across the country, discuss sexuality issues, relax in the company of likeminded folk and network.

Armed with a name and a purpose, for the next few years the conference alternated between venues in London and Edinburgh. In 1989 it branched out to Coventry and a range of towns have hosted it since.

Every year BiCon is organised by a different group of activists, sometimes under the banner of a local Bisexual group, sometimes as independents. In 1992, at the University of East Anglia in Norwich it was even organised by Bifrost - a bisexual magazine of the time.

Over the years BiCon has matured, grown and expanded its scope. The word 'conference' has been largely replaced by 'convention', but there is still a political and campaigning side to the event. Recent organisers have, however, admitted that the social side of the event is as important to get right.

This year BiCon is being organised by a team from London. Although many of the organisers have been to the various London bisexual groups the convention is not affiliated with any one group specifically.