This is SKYRACK No 4 dated 1st July 1959 and published by Ron Bennett,7 Southway, Arthurs Avenue, Harrogate, Yorkshire, England.6d per copy,six issues for 2/6d. 35 cents for 6 issues in USA, subscriptions to Bob Pavlat, Maryland. News of interest to SF fans gratefully accepted. Cartoon by Archie Mercer. The typed number on the back page shows the issue your subscription expires. This issue is being circulated to members of The Off-Trail Magazine Publishers Association as a Postmailing to the June 1959 (OMPA 20) Mailing. Subscribers in OMPA will have their subscription extended, naturally. Note that SKYRACK is the only Yorkshire newspaper not affected by the present deadlock. Fandom comes through!




As reported in the previous issue of SKYRACK, London will stage the 1960 British Convention. The original announcement took some London fans by surprise for it was realised that the party which travelled to Cheltenham at Whitsun “had no power to conclude a final agreement”(Ken Bulmer). Rumours of a split in the London Circle because of this misunderstanding followed, but it is pleasing to note that the breach has been healed, and that enthusiasm has not been impaired.

Ken Bulmer tells me by phone that the last London Circle business meeting at the White Horse the decision was reached to accept the offer of the British Science Fiction Association and that London will hold the Convention in conjunction with the BSFA. No hotel has as yet been booked, nor has a Convention Committee been elected. It is expected that the Committee will be formed shortly, while a search for a suitable hotel is already in progress. The Convention will take place at Whitsun.

Ken also announces that the London Circle will hold a one day convention, a Conversazione, sometime in the latter half of September. Details will be announced later.

PETER DAVIES of the newly formed STOURBRIDGE & DISTRICT S.F. CIRCLE wrote to say that the group plans a fanzine and also sent me a card from Devon where he is holidaying. Also on holiday are members of the Liverpool SFS. John Roles is in Belfast and along with Audrey Eversfield and Keith Freeman of the Cheltenham Circle, Norman and Ina Shorrock, Jeff Collins, Nancy Pooley, Bill Harrison and Stan Nuttall are spending a fortnight in Iviza, the westernmost of the Balearic Islands. Eddie Jones is in Jersey and reports that beer and cigarettes are half the price charged at home. Before you begin to pack with the thought of rushing off and. joining Eddie, save some more pennies in the piggy-bank. The Iviza Liverpudlians report that vodka is selling at 7/6 a bottle and that cigarettes are 20 for 3d,. Of course, they don’t say what brand of cigarettes!

KEITH FREEMAN, the same Knight of St. Fantony mentioned above, reports that as it is a 90% probability that London will hold  the Con at Whitsun next year, Ken Slater is considering organising an Easter convention.

VINCE CLARKE, one of the Big Three who founded OMPA, has resigned from the Association because of lack of time. For much the same reason, Sandy Sanderson has resigned from FAPA.

SANDRA HALL has moved to 41 North End. House, Fitzjames Avenue, London W14. Ernest Sterne has moved to 43 Roper Avenue, Leeds 8, Yorkshire; telephone 663409.

LYN BERMAN, Ted Carnell’s Girl Friday, is spending a year or thereabouts in the ‘Dark Continent’ and writes to say that she is now employed as Assistant Shipping Manager with a South African head office (in Cape Town) of an English firm. She sends her regards to fans over here and in the States and, especially mentions Norman and Ina Shorrock and Lynn Hickman.

ANNE LUBELL of Brooklyn writes to say that while she may, after all be in England in July, it is far more likely that she’ll hit these shores during November. Sounds like a foggy, foggy do.

KEN BULMER who has just returned from a holiday in Italy with Pamela, kindly sends a copy of the first London Circle Bulletin which states “Meetings of the London Circle are held on the first Thursday of every month at the Globe and on the third Friday of every month at the White Horse. The Globe meetings are social occasions. So are the White Horse gatherings but in addition we have taken a private room at the White Horse and any business that may arise can then be discussed privately among the assembled fen without aside distractions. So the White Horse meetings are the official business meetings of the LO - and you are kindly asked to take downstairs all your empty bottles and glasses at the end of the evening.”   Next Globe meetings are 2nd July and 6th August. Next meetings at the White Horse are 17th July and 21st August. Note that the August SKYRACK will be published in London.

APORRHETA 11, May-June 1959 (Sandy Sanderson., “Inchmery” 236 Queen’s Road, New Cross, London SE 11; 50 pages, 1/6 or 15cents per copy, 6 for 8/- or $1, 12 for 15/- or $2   With this issue Sandy has really gone off his original monthly schedule but is hard to see how a magazine of both quality and quantity, which Ape certainly is, could be produced at such short regular intervals. With this issue too, Sandy reverts to his original layout and the popular Inchmery Fan Diary feature is complete in itself rather than containing the columns which are an integral part of Ape. Sandy lampoons the idea of a focal point for fandom and is supported by Atom with a funny but biting cartoon advert. There are columns by myself and Joy Clarke and a rather longer than usual offering from Penelope Fandergaste, which is also somewhat better than the columns we have seen from this mystery character of late. Recommended of course.

ORION 22 (Ella Parker, 151 Canterbury Road, West Kilburn, London NW6; 52 pages:; 1/- or 15 cents). This issue comes in two parts, 40 pages of fanzine-proper, and a supplementary 12 pages of You Said. It, readers’ letters. Ken Bulmer contributes two items  which fact in itself makes ORION a Collector’s piece. One article by Ken deals with a write-up on the London Circle and the other is one of Ken’s entertaining TAFF tales (entertaining but a little bitty compared to others Ken has written). There are also two BrumCon reports, by Brian Jordan and Ivor Mayne, which show that fandom is not lacking richness in new writings after all. John Berry contributes another in his series of popular Sergeant tales. Well up to the standard of other recent British fanzines.

THE BEST OF FANDOM 1958 has appeared and may be obtained from its publisher, Guy E. Terwilleger, 1412 Albright St. Boise, Idaho USA at 75 cents a copy. I can’t speak too highly of his record of all that’s good in fandom, a record which does not ignore British fanzines. In addition to the anthology of published articles there are an art section, a summary of the year’s news by Ron Elllik and an excellent introduction by Bob Madle. Should be in every home.

OOPSLAs 26 and 27 (Gregg Calkins, 1484 East 17th South, Salt Lake City 5, Utah, USA) and SHANGRI-L’AFFAIRES 42 (Al Lewis 2548 West 12th Street, Los Angeles 6, California, USA) have also appeared during the past month and. are mentioned here because they contain, respectively, parts 4, 8 and 13 of my widely distributed Colonial Excursion report of my last summer’s TAFF trip to the Solacon. I understand that INNUENDO has also appeared within the last couple of weeks, but this has not yet reached Britain. This latest issue contains the 12th chapter of Colonial Excursion, which is a report on the Solacon itself. Don’t say I don’t warn you.

THE DIRECTORY OF SF FANDOM 1958 has now sold out as have all back issues of SKYRACK. There are however, still several copies of PLOY 14 left. These may be obtained for l/9d or 25 cents from myself or Bob Pavlat. This is the Bob Tucker Appreciation issue and contains material by Bob himself, Gregg Calkins, “Phoenix,” Sandy Sanderson, myself, Bob Coulson and Bob Bloch. There are Owen-captioned Rotsler illos and artwork by Atom, Bill Harry and Barry Hall. And me, too.

THE TRANS-ATLANTIC FAN FUND is still moving along srnoothly, but in order to ensure that a North American delegate will attend the Convention over here next year more cash is needed. Both contributions and the votes themselves (nominated are Terry Carr, Don Ford and Bjo Wells) will be gratefully accepted by either myself or Bob Madle, 3608 Caroline, Indianapolis 18, Indiana,USA. I am also British representative for the Detention, the Detroit Convention to be held in September. Subscriptions cost 7/-.

ERIC BENTCLIFFE comes up with the idea that as “there just isn’t enough happening in UK fandom to provide a monthly mag with copy....” I might include with SKYRACK a report, a review or a discussion stencilled by other fen. I’d temper that point with the offer to distribute with copies of SKYRACK readily duplicated copies of rider sheets as FANAC has been doing with GYRE and RUR. I believe this practice first began with the Futurian War Digest, which brings the scheme nearer home. I must insist, however, that I have the right to veto any such rider sheets. I hardly think that anyone who might take advantage of this offer will object if I say that I will not distribute riders which possess the lack of quality seen in the recent FLIP, published by Bill Rickhardt as a rider to a Ted White magazine. Let’s have freedom of speech by all means, but lets respect that freedom. If anyone is interested in circulating sheets with SKYRACK could they first write me so that we can discuss circulation...?

ARCHIE MERCER, who should surely be mentioned in every issue of SKYRACK as a matter of principle, reports that 20th June saw a three man Minicon at the Mercertorial Caravan, with Archie being visited by Jhim Linwood and. Ivor Mayne. Archie writes that the pair were there “about eight hours or so. All the time we played records and they read Mad and Panic. Better than playing brag, anyhow.” I trust the last remark will shock science fiction fans the world over.