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Shropshire comic fans in heaven as Comics Salopia returns to Shrewsbury

Comic book fans young and old and interested visitors alike are gaining a fascinating insight into the whole industry at a major event this weekend.

Mike Pritchard hard at work
Mike Pritchard hard at work

Comics Salopia is taking place in and around Shrewsbury and is continuing on Sunday.

Centred around the castle and museum and the library, there are workshops, free signings, Q and As, meet and greets, exhibitions and talks, with all genres of comic books covered.

Amongst the many guests are Marvel artist Esad Ribic who has worked on Thor and Loki, and Dave Gibbons, best known for Watchmen.

Shrewsbury's own Charlie Adlard

Patrick Goddard who has worked on Judge Dredd is also visiting as well as Mike Perkins and Shropshire's own Charlie Adlard of the Walking Dead series of books is headlining.

Today there were workshops on manga, kids' cartoons and kids' comic art amongst others.

Patrick Goddard has worked on Judge Dredd

Sunday's entertainment partly centres on beloved comic 'The Beano', with a workshop featuring artist Marc Jackson at the coffee shop 'Coffee, Cups and Creatives' on Castle Street and a panel interview with fellow artists Laura Howell, Lew Stringer and Nigel Parkinson.

There is also strong female representation to the festival with a panel called the Female Frontier.

As part of the festival, a series of nine large Comic Salopia boards are in place around the town centre, as part of a trail featuring the work of some of the artists.

Beano artist Laura Howell giving a cartoon workshop at Shrewsbury Library

One of the organisers of the event is Shrewsbury-born Shane Chebsey who has been involved in the industry for over 20 years, first as an artist and now as a publisher and organiser of comic festivals.

He said they had been overwhelmed in the first two days by the crowds who had come into the various venues where it is being held.

Esad Ribic

Shane said: "We thought the train strikes might affect the numbers attending but it has been very busy all day today and yesterday and the good thing is there are people from the area but also those from outside who have really seemed to enjoy what has been on offer so far.

"Even those who may not be into comic books have come along to meet the artists, see demonstrations and get pictures or autographs which are free.

Comics Salopia 2022

"There is a charge for some of the workshops but they give an invaluable insight into the work of some of these professionals who have worked on the world's top publications.

"What is also nice is that all the artists have commented on what a lovely venue Shrewsbury is for the event - I might be biased when I say that but they aren't and the town has been very well received."

Entry to the Castle and Museum is free though there may be a charge for some of the workshops - for more details visit comicssalopia.com.

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