Full steampunk ahead for festival in Doncaster

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Doncaster is set to take a Victorian turn this weekend as the Steampunk festival returns to the borough.

From Victorian martial arts to photography workshops to costume competitions, Doncaster’s second Steampunk Festival is set to bring together all the elements of the movement over the course of two days.

Steampunk embraces a love of the Victorian era, combined with imagery from Jules Verne, HG Wells, Sherlock Holmes, The League of Extraordinary Gentleman and a wealth of other influences from the last two centuries and beyond.

Organiser Tony Bates says the festival is shaping up to be a fantastic event that he hopes will attract fans and newcomers alike.

“We’re back by popular demand, and this year we’re going to have so much more going on than last time,” said Tony.

He added: “We’re going to have lots of people dressed up in costume and it’s going to be a lot of fun.

“We’ve got some great things planned for the weekend.”

He added: “There will be film shows, and table top gaming with a Victorian twist.

“And we’ve got entertainment planned for the evening in the shape of burlesque pole dancing and steampunk rapping.

“This is the only event of its kind in South Yorkshire, and we’re hoping it will help to put Doncaster on the map.

“We also want to raise as much money as we can for the Doncaster School for the Deaf, which is a really good cause.”

The event is also attracting international names, with eminent Dutch photographer Ruud de Korte providing free steampunk photographic workshops across the weekend.

People attending will also be given the chance to learn Baritsu, which combines techniques from countless other martial arts that help to create the perfect defence system for a ‘Victorian gentleman in Victorian London’.

The event takes place at the Doncaster School for the Deaf on Leger Way this Saturday, June 21, and Sunday, June 22. Tickets cost £17 for adults for the weekend, and £8.50 for under 16s. Day and evening tickets are also available. Visit Steampunk Doncaster for more information or to book.

Origins of the Steampunk movement

* According to steampunks, the concept of blending retro settings with futuristic themes through science fiction has been in existence since the Victorian age

* But the term steampunk term originates from the 1980s as a tongue-in-cheek variant on cyberpunk, coined by science fiction writer, KW Jeter

* The name stuck and, since then, the term has appeared in several science fiction books including Paul Di Filippo’s 1995 Steampunk Trilogy

* Films such as Wild Wild West, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and the recent Sherlock Holmes movie series, are thought to be in keeping with, and have attracted people to, the movement