Eastbound logo Westbound logo

Open Letter to UK Fandom
May 1958

From Ken Bulmer

H. Ken Bulmer, Tresco, 204, Wellmeadow Road, Catford, London, S.E.6. England. 29th May, 1958.

Fandom of Britain:

This is about TAFF. That is, as you all know, the TRANSATLANTIC FAN FUND. I have not dummied this and I am not going to bother about fine phrases. What I have to say is rugged.

TAFF was a little slow in getting off the ground this year, through no fault of the organisers. But as an institution in fandom, taff is well known; everyone agrees that it is a “Good Thing” and mention of it goes on right throughout the year. So that when the ballot forms begin to drop through your letter box there should be no need at all for continuous reminders. Taff is – or should be – one of the facets of your participation in fandom.

So far I’ve had 30 votes from British and Continental fans.

Booking details have been arranged through the courtesy and energy of Norman Shorrock. We have to know if we can send the winner to South Gate in 58 (magic words!) by the deadline date of June 15th. § So far I have about £50, Walter Willis has £20 and at last count Bob Madle had $100. Assuming that Bob has a little more by now, we are still short of the bare fare by about £40. Perhaps a little less. Say £35½. § The Directory of 1957 sf Fandom contains 10 pages with about 35 names per page. Some of those are US fen. But the balance makes 30 votes look pretty small, doesn’t it?



You have about a week to select your choice from the three candidates. They’re all three good fen; anyone would make a fine British representative. I’ll tell you their names again: Ron Bennett. John Berry. Dave Newman. You know them through fannish channels. They each rely on you to support not only themselves and taff but the whole idea that fandom is worthwhile, that it can really do something outside itself for a change and show cause for its continued existence.

Let’s send a British fan across this year – and make it the first time TAFF has been run in successive years!

§§ This seems a good place to express my own personal appreciation of the TAFF for 1955. For all of you who then voted and donated, I feel this word of explanation is due. After Walter’s magnificent account, The Harp Stateside, it would have been redundant for me to attempt anything similar. I can say, tho’, that a small zine is being readied, to be sent to all who voted at that time, carrying as its main idea a token of my own thanks which seems to me more important, than any account could be, especially as much has appeared elsewhere, and a resume of what I got out of the trip that I think will appeal.



FROM: HKBulmer, Tresco, 204, Wellmeadow Rd., Catford, London, S.E.6.