Summary of the BBC Backstage London Christmas Bash

Ian & Matthew @ BBC Backstage

Some of you might notice this is almost a copy of the summary on the backstage blog, but I've added bits which I felt were best left for a personal blog.

Thank you to everyone who turned up and made this our most successful event to date.

We had started very early on Saturday afternoon packing bags thanks all the people who signed up and helped out before the doors opened.

Crazy amount of backstage goodie bags

We did open the doors on time and did turn some people away because they were not on the main guest list, which was a big regret on our part but those were the rules we specified in the emails. After 8pm the venue was open for anyone who wanted to enter.

Nicole only has eyes for one person

Once we said a few welcome and thanks speeches it was back on with the party and a night of endless chatting and djs playing all types of music. There was even some so called dancing…

End of night dancing

Our goodie bags were packed with stuff and enjoyed by the people who came to the bash. Everyone also got one of our new Backstage T-shirts, which went down well.

BBC Backstage Goody bag

There was some interviews at the event, which were done by Chris Vallance of BBC Radio 5 Live's Pods and Blogs. We've put them online for your listening enjoyment

Matthew Cashmore talks about BBC Backstage
Sarah Blow on London Girl Geekdinners and Geek culture
Walid Al Saqqaf talks about
James Cridland talks about Virgin Radio
Ian Forrester talks about London Geekdinners and Geek Media
Matthew Spouce on New Scientist Magazine
Adam Fletcher on Spread Shirt
Nigel Helmeton on

My wife Sarah also wanted to say sorry and explain what happened upstairs which caused her to shout fucking bitch while she headed for the toilet very upset. It would turn out Dedrie from Chinwag had been joking around and took it too far with someone (sarah) who she didn't know.

We have received some fantastic feedback…

And a huge thank you to Ian, Matthew and their team at BBC Backstage for being wonderful hosts. A big thank you as well to our generous sponsors who helped the evening go with a swing by providing us with food, drink and raffle prizes – Admob, Skills Matter, ConnectMeAnywhere, O'Reilly, Trusted Places, Techcrunch UK, and Chinwag.

Helen from Swedish Beers

I just got back from the BBC Backstage Christmas Bash. I went with Adam, who was in London for the night en route to Le Web in Paris. I met some interesting people, some new, some old, drank back some of my licence fee in free beer, and had a pretty good time. We were interviewed by BBC Radio 5 at some point, but Adam thought it would be funnier to wind me up and make me laugh than it would to be on the radio, so I doubt that it'll be aired.

From Matt Sparkes.

Actually the BBC never paid for any of the drink. We only paid for the venue and food. The Sponsors paid for the drinks and although your laughing might not have got on the radio. We may have found a uncut version for the Backstage community.

John Wilison will you admit to seeing a good side to the BBC now?

Some more comments and emails

To an interesting party tonight courtesy of the folks at BBC Backstage, who were kind enough to manage to get me into this party at moderate last-minute. Lots of fascinating people, some even saying that the party reminded them of the last web boom.

James Cridland

I just wanted to say thanks for organising such a delightful event on Saturday – it seemed to flow supafine from what I could see once we got off the front desk – and I had interesting conversations which is all I care about really, thanks again!

Nicole from HP

Well I can happily report that the BBC Backstage London Christmas Bash was a total success! Ian and the rest of the guys behind the event did a cracking job in organising it. One of the key highlights was the cake for the guys at kindly provide. The BBC goody bag was also very cool too

Adam Burt

I would like to thank you and your team for organizing such a great party. We had a great time. Thank you.

Josette from O'Reilly

Lots of drinking, Cake and a little dancing from the odd one or two people… As well as speeches and prize giveaways. Oh and not to mention the sear number of people there… There were party bags, t-shirts and we even had santa's little helpers do the party bags. /images/emoticons/happy.gif

Sarah Blow from London Girl Geekdinners

Thank you for letting us participate in the BBC Backstage event as sponsors. The cake has generate a good amount of buzz.

Walid from Trusted

I wanted to thank you for giving Skills Matter the opportunity to be a part of your great party on Saturday evening

Joanna from Skills Matter

Just wanted to drop you a quick note to say thanks for all your hard work organising the backstage bash/geeks christmas party. It was great fun, and nice to see everyone all in one place.

Caz from BBC/Siemens

I went along to the BBC Backstage Christmas party last night. I've posted some photos to Flickr. I'm a Graucho-Marxist curmudgeon who'd never belong to a club that would have me as a member, but I can honestly say thanks to Ian Forrester and his colleagues at Backstage, the sponsors, helpers, and the tireless staff at the Cuban it was a great night.

Miles Metcalfe

I did recieve one email (from a sponsor) complaining about the bash.

I write today to express my disappointment to see the information bag sitting in the corner when leaving the BBC party on Saturday…

…On top of this there was only one poster in the whole venue that mentioned us but there where a host of “supported by” posters scattered around…

…I hate to write this negative email but we did hope that as a sponsors we would receive better promotion and because of this we found the evening frustrating.

I have yet to write back because every other sponsor has said thank you very much and they would like to work with us again on the next one.

Finally a selection of our best shots from the bash cakeBBC Backstage London Christmas BashParty on!PosterO'REILLY - BackstageSarah with her lemonadeDSCF8410.jpgIan & Matthew @ BBC BackstageSarah Blow with a cocktailDSCF8444.jpgPeople chilling upstairsMario twitteringRadio 5 live's Pods and BlogsDj Cashmore spins some tunesSarah and ShilaInspire the backstage bashTag your self hereHelen and SarahGet your backstage tshirts hereDot caught taking all the beerMatthew gets interviewed by BBC Radio 5 liveBBC Backstage London Christmas BashBBC Backstage London Christmas BashBBC Backstage London Christmas BashBBC Backstage London Christmas Bash

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Werewolf night yesterday

Sheila vs Sheila, but are they both werewolves really?

So yesterday I setup the first Werewolf only night in London. It started badly, with me running late. I should have factored in 40mins from White City to Moorgate not 20mins. Plus work demands meant I was running late full stop. Turned up and the bar had set a-side a area, but it was right next to the main bar and it simply wouldn't have worked. However what had happened was a mixup on the bar's part. They had booked the wrong area. So after 15mins of drinks and talking, we moved to the private suite which held about 25 people. There was a large table which made things tricky, so our circle looked more like a squashed triangle. Anyway once a few of us had explained the rules and run through a few tatics, we were off into the 1st game.

I don't remember all the games (think we ended up playing up to 6?)but I certainly remember the one when I was a werewolf with Tiff and Frances. Sheila (australian sheila) pointed the finger at me early on because I had pointed the camera at the victim of the first night attack. I think it was a guess but she was right, so I came out as the seer. Then someone else did and after a while Sheila (aus) did too. But it started to work, I got off and started to pretend to check people every round. People started to believe after a while. And my thoughts about killing myself off to keep the werewolves winning, didn't need to happen. We won and I believe the other werewolves never got fingered once. It was certainly an adrenalin rush and couldn't help but stand up and put my arms up in the air at the end. Harry was gutted because he never believed me as the seer then slowly started to believe and so got taken in by my lies. Oh well thats the way it goes… Deception is such a great thing.

So without going into more detail about the games played, we had roughtly at one point 17 or 18 people enough for 3 werewolves, a seer and a healer. The smallest game was 14 people with 2 werewolves and a seer. Everyone enjoyed the night and would happily go to another one. So I'm going to speak to the venue about removing the table next time and maybe getting a large food order at the start of the game instead. Maybe it might also be worth spending money on getting all our drinks delivered to the room, so the breaks between won't be so long? As usual there's my pictures here and public pictures here.

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