A yellow and black graphic with a silhouette skyline of Belfast that incorporates a film strip into the design of one of their buildings. There is a title logo of BFI FAN CON, the text 'Connecting the BFI Film Audience Network, Belfast, 11-13 September 2024. There is also the BFI Film Audience Network and The National Lottery Logo.

BFI FAN CON – Connecting the BFI Film Audience Network

Belfast, 11-13 September 2024

Join us in September at a new conference for BFI FAN members. Cinemas and film exhibitors from across the UK will gather to strengthen their professional networks, learn about some of the most exciting FAN projects, and draw inspiration on new ways to reach and engage audiences in a diverse screen culture.

The first BFI FAN CON will take place in Belfast at Queen’s Film Theatre (QFT) and Queen’s University Belfast (QUB), offering a brilliant chance for FAN members to get together and explore this exciting, welcoming city with its many cinematic landmarks.

The conference will open with a preview screening on Wednesday, 11 September and be followed by two days of sessions and workshops across Thursday and Friday. On Thursday evening, there will be a conference dinner in the Great Hall of QUB, and on Friday evening, there will be the opportunity to join a specially curated cinematic tour of Belfast.

BFI FAN CON is for all types of FAN exhibitors, from small community cinemas and touring collectives right up to large multi-screen independent cinemas and landmark film festivals. The event is for anyone working or volunteering in any film exhibition role at a FAN member organisation and at any level of their careers. If you’re passionate about your work in film exhibition, we hope you’ll join us at BFI FAN CON!

A limited number of Early Bird Tickets are available now.

Book now

Open Call for Session Ideas

We are keen to hear from FAN members and others who want to suggest and develop sessions.

We are especially interested in topics that will be of relevance to other FAN members, providing learning and inspiration. If you are interested, please see below for further information. We will offer you a fee if your proposal is included in the programme.

Get tickets

Early Bird Conference Ticket: £80 (All organisations and freelancers). Save up to £20!

A limited number of Early Bird tickets are available on a first-come-first-served basis.

Conference Ticket: £100 (To be released after Early Bird)

Small Organisations Conference Ticket: £85 (To be released after Early Bird)

Freelancer Ticket: £85 (To be released after Early Bird.)

Standard Tickets, Small Organisations Tickets and Freelancers Tickets will be available once the Early Bird offer expires. You can select the Small Organisations Ticket option if you’re a voluntary-run organisation or an organisation with up to 5 employees.

If you’re a freelancer, please check that you are eligible.

There is a limit of 2 delegates per organisation. Email us if you’d like to put additional delegates on a waiting list.

The ticket price includes the Opening Reception and Screening, the conference refreshments and lunches on Thursday/Friday and the Thursday Conference Dinner in the Great Hall. The cinematic tour is not included and tickets are available to book separately for £15.

Book now

Outline schedule

Full programme details are still to be announced but we can guarantee an exciting line-up of speakers and contributors.

Wednesday 11 September

18:00 – Opening reception & a special screening at QFT

Thursday 12 September

09:00-17:00 – Conference Day 1, QFT
19:00 – Conference Dinner in the Great Hall of Queen’s University Belfast

Friday 13 September

09:00-17:00 – Conference Day 2, QFT
Evening – Cinematic Tour of Belfast (Booked separately)

Who can attend?

BFI FAN CON is for anyone who works or volunteers at a member organisation of the BFI Film Audience Network. Organisations can become a member through their regional or national Film Hub.

We hope that a wide range of venues, large and small, from all over the UK will send delegates to BFI FAN CON. We’d like to see people who work in many different areas of film exhibition, from audience development, front-of-house, programming, operations, leadership positions, marketing and more.

Freelancers: There are a limited number of Freelancer Tickets available for freelancers who are currently working on a project with a FAN member, have worked on a project with a FAN member in the last 12 months, are collaborating on the BFI FAN Spotlight project or are working on a Cross-FAN Champion Area.

If you’re not sure whether you’re eligible to attend, send an email to before you book and we’ll be able to help.


We have rooms available at Queen’s University Belfast for £45/night for about 1/3 of conference delegates on 11th & 12th September. We hope to be able to allocate this accommodation to organisations or individuals that may find it more challenging to afford to attend BFI FAN CON than better-funded organisations. Please indicate if you would like to put yourself forward for one of these rooms when you register.

There are no follow-up questions on eligibility; we will contact you as soon as possible to confirm if one is available, as rooms will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis. You can also email us at if you’d like to check availability before you book your ticket.

We have also secured special conference discounts at other Belfast city centre hotels, with rates at the closest hotel from £90 per night. Details will be circulated to booked delegates.

Support to attend

Your Film Hub may also be able to offer bursary support for your attendance.


Ferry + Train: This is the most environmentally friendly way to travel to BFI FAN CON from Great Britain, so we encourage you to consider it. You can search for and book combined ferry + train tickets on

There are regular ferries from Cairnryan to Belfast with Stena Line, which also has a twice-daily service from Liverpool. It’s also possible to travel with Irish Ferries or Stena Line from Holyhead to Dublin Port and then onwards to Belfast by train or bus.

Air: Belfast City Airport is three miles from Belfast City Centre. The Translink Airport Express 600 bus service runs between the airport and Belfast City Centre.

Belfast International Airport is a 30-minute drive from Belfast City Centre. The Translink Airport Express 300 bus service runs between the airport and Belfast City Centre.

See the FAQ for local transport options.


How accessible is the event?

QFT is an accessible building adapted to make your visit as easy as possible. You can find detailed access information on the QFT website and watch walk-through videos. The other spaces we will use in Queen’s University Belfast are also accessible. You can find some detailed access information about the Laynyon Building, where the Great Hall is located.

A quiet room at QFT will be available throughout the event.

Live captions, transcription and BSL interpretation can be provided for sessions.

Please let us know if you have any accessibility requirements in your online registration.

The Cinematic Tour of Belfast involves moving around the city on a route of up to 2 miles. The route is wheelchair accessible. If you have other questions about accessibility on the tour, please do get in touch.

If you have any other needs or queries about access not answered here, email us at:

When can I see the full schedule?

The full schedule is still being finalised and is not yet available. We will announce the full conference programme as soon as possible so check back soon for updates but we can promise an exciting and inspiring line-up of case studies, workshops, discussions and more!

What’s included in the conference ticket?

The ticket price includes the main conference sessions, the opening reception and film preview on Wednesday evening, conference refreshments and lunches on Thursday/Friday and the Thursday Conference Dinner in the Great Hall. The Cinematic Tour is not included and can be booked at an extra cost of £15 per person. You can book this nearer the time if you prefer.

Accommodation is not included in the conference ticket.

How can I get to QFT once I’m in Belfast?

You can find QFT at 20 University Square, just across the road from the Graduate School at Queen’s University Belfast.

The nearest train station is Botanic Station (5 mins walk).

The nearest Metro stops (1 min walk) are:

– Botanic Avenue – College Green stop. Bus 7A, 7B, 7C, 7D, 29,

29A, 29B, 29C, and Ulsterbus Nos 18A and 519.

– University Road – Queen’s University stop. Bus 8A, 8B, 8C, 8D.

Parking: Limited during the day on weekdays but there’s free parking along University Square and at the car park by the McClay Library from 4.30pm on weekdays and throughout the weekend. There are also parking spaces for disabled badge holders across the road by the Graduate School. These are available for 5.30pm during the week and all day at the weekend.

Book Tickets

Remember to check your eligibility before booking a ticket.

Read our Code of Conduct

The BFI Film Audience Network want the conference to be a welcoming, collegiate and inclusive space for film professionals. We expect people attending and working at BFI FAN CON to maintain this code of conduct. Harassment and bullying have no place at BFI FAN CON.

Examples of inappropriate behaviours that contravene our code of conduct include offensive comments, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of events, aggressive behaviour, inappropriate physical contact and unwelcome sexual attention.

If someone behaves inappropriately towards you or you witness something inappropriate, please report it to a member of BFI FAN CON staff or email us. Your complaint will be treated with discretion. We are happy to help and can help report inappropriate behaviour to the authorities where necessary or address the problem ourselves where more appropriate. We reserve the right to refuse entry to anyone who does not comply with our code of conduct. This code of conduct applies both in-person and online.

If you would like to speak to an independent organisation about an issue, the Film and TV Charity have a free and confidential 24-hour helpline available on 0800 054 00 00.

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