1996 – BiCon 96

The 14th BiCon, BiCon 96, was held in Kingston upon Thames, London, on the 30th August-1st September 1996. It was organised by a London group including Marcus, Caramel, Simon and others and was attended by 233 people.

After the event, the organiser's final report was put on the new bi.org site. It can be seen at 1996.bicon.org.uk.

Archive materials

Announcement and booking form – May 1996

As posted* to the soc.bi Usenet newsgroup:

The 14th UK National Bisexual Conference
                BiCon '96
      August 30th - September 1st 1996
           Kingston Upon Thames

Registration Form and Introduction
The National Bisexual Conference is a three day celebration of bisexuality, for bisexuals, our friends and our allies. Held in the UK since 1984, BiCon 96 will be the 14th such gathering of the UKs bisexual population. The weekend is an informal affair, although papers have been presented in the past it feels more like a convention than a conference like those of the political parties. Its like a giant family re-union, but one thats always glad to welcome new members. Over the weekend there will be a timetable of workshops, talks, events and panels in the daytime, and also entertainment in the evenings with a huge party on the Saturday night! Theres space to unwind, an art exhibition that you can be part of, a bar and much more besides!

Who goes to BiCon? Well, a wide range of people come! Some are activists, political animals, others are there for the socialising and networking, relaxing in the atmosphere. There will be many people for who this is their first contact with other bisexuals, revelling in the chance to enter a bisexual space. Others will have been coming to the conferences for years. Were across the spectrum on age, race, gender, lifestyle, class, ability, wealth, sex and politics. There is hopefully going to be something for everyone, and everyone is welcome!

Workshops, talks and events will be organised on a variety of topics and themes. Some are specially designed for those who will be attending their first conference, to help you feel more welcome, and to quickly find your place amidst our annual bustling get together (if this will be your first conference please indicate this on the form at the end). There has been a wide range in previous years. Political ones: Stonewall and The Pride Trust have both sent speakers to gauge bisexual opinion. Lifestyle ones: Bisexuals and Marriage, Religion, Polygamy, Monogamy, Parenting. Safer Sex workshops have covered, and will continue to, the whole spectrum of bisexual sexual behaviour. And there are always fun workshops, where you can unwind, make friends while playing games. In fact, almost any topic and every topic comes up! If you would like to facilitate a workshop yourself, please send us your ideas either with this form or later on, and well try to fit you in.

The accommodation that the University is supplying is in the form of flats with six bedrooms. There will be food available from the Students Union and there is a wide range of cafes and eateries in Kingston itself. The conference is self catering, and each flat has a fully fitted kitchen. If you have any preferences as to who you share the flat with then please note these down on a separate sheet. It would be helpful if you registered at the same time as the others you mention, especially if there is 6 of you. Alternatively we can supply you with a list of Bed and Breakfasts and hotels in the area, and of campsites, if you wish to use these. There will be some crash space available, but this will be very limited, spartan and we cannot guarantee how near the venue it will be. We recommend that to get the most out of the weekend you book the official accommodation.

To register, just complete this form and send it to us at the PO Box address below. We regret we cannot take registration by credit card, cheques drawn on overseas banks or by e-mail, but UK cheques, international money orders, UK postal orders are all fine

Address :


Tel. No. (Optional):

Email (Optional):

This will be my first BiCon [ ]

Income           Registration         Registration      Accommodation
                before/at Pride        after Pride        per night
Unwaged                 8                12                10
Up to 10,000           10                15                12
Up to 15,000           16                24                16
Up to 20,000           24                36                24
Over 20,000            32                48                24

Day registration costs one half the undiscounted registration price for the entire conference. It is only available at the conference itself.

Attending:                Accommodation:        
Friday 30th        [ ]        Thursday        [ ]
Saturday 31st      [ ]        Friday          [ ]
Sunday 1st         [ ]        Saturday        [ ]
                              Sunday          [ ]

                Attendance        = ____
Number of nights
accommodation     = ____ X ____   = ____
                Total enclosed:     ____

Ill need the following:
[ ]        Reservation of creche space. Please specify ages and any other
        important details about the children on a separate sheet.
[ ]        BSL Signing        
[ ]         Disabled Accessible Accommodation Please specify requirements 
        on a separate sheet
[ ]        Details of campsites and hotels in the area        
[ ]        Crash space

Please send the form and payment and any other correspondance to:
                        BiCon '96
                        c/o BM Box LBWG
                        London WC1N 3XX

* By 'C:APPSWINSOCKKA9QSPOOLMAIL' according to Google's archive!

At this point in time, many people used dial-up modems to access the internet. As Windows 3.x and the first release of Windows 95 couldn't do the TCP/IP networking protocol the internet uses over a modem, a popular program to enable that was 'WinSock' – 'Windows Sockets' – which could. One program that could handle email and newsgroups was 'KA9Q' – named after a ham radio station – so this was posted by someone running MS Windows and using KA9Q set up to send things from its spool/mail directory… They were probably using Demon Internet which recommended this combination of programs.

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