Over the last couple of days, there have been plenty of great blog posts and reviews of BrightonSEO. I echo the sentiments of all bloggers, the quality of the event was incredible and put simply this FREE event rivals and often exceeds many of the paid events I have previously attended.

This post, however, is not about the quality of the speakers, the great content or the venerable and unbelievably engaging Dave Trott, I am instead dedicating this post to the Afterparty!

The gift that keeps giving

So if attending a FREE SEO meet-up wasn’t enough, receiving two free beer tokens along with my name badge was an inspired touch!!

After a good solid day of absorbing SEO knowledge, the last speaker finished his presentation and was gently ushered off stage for Kelvin to close proceedings.

I would be lying if I said my mind wasn’t distracted by the promise of a couple of cold free beers and the thought of the after party antics, so as the curtain fell on a great day of SEO knowledge, we hastily made our way to through to the Corn Exchange…

The Beer

Dark Star Brewery – @Darkstarbrewco

Coffee jugs were now replaced by Beer pumps and queues for hot drinks now six deep queues for the bar. After a brief wait I had my hands on a couple of very agreeable light beers from the Dark Star Brewery.

During the course of the night, I would visit the bar on more than one occasion in an attempt to work my way through all of the 5 or 6 beers on offer, a local hop beer and a number of San Miguels before the night was over.

The Activities

Around the perimeter of the hall were a number of activities, all of which seemed designed to either encourage competitive edge or cause potential embarrassment!

A selection of the BrightonSEO activities
Left to right: Roller Racing with @kelvinnewman & @thehodge, Retrogaming & Human Fly

Roller Racing

South Coast Sprints – @scsprints

The thought of racing head-to-head against an opponent was initially extremely unappealing, the prospect of sweating, being out of breath and on the verge of a heart attack are not things I typically associate with a good night out.

However, the guys at South Coast Sprints did an amazing job of building up a great atmosphere and making this seem much more appealing. So before I had a chance to think, my feet were strapped into the pedals, and I was racing head to head against work colleague Rosco. I was in the zone…3-2-1 GO and peddling for my life.

The race was a 250 metre sprint and although took around 15 seconds to complete, it definitely felt like a lot longer! The physical exertion was surprisingly intense, but somehow I made it. Although I’m convinced I had a puncture which affected my time!

Gotta say, despite my lack of physical fitness and the post exercise dizziness that followed, the Roller Racing was awesome!

Human Fly

Courtesy of Manual Link Building – @manlinkbuilding

Imagine a large Velcro covered inflatable. ‘Human flies’, basically anyone who was game, would then don a full Velcro suit and bounce around a stick on the inflatable, instigating a number of amusing and unorthodox positions!

After the cycling experience, and maybe one or two too many trips to the bar, I decided against trying this out first hand.

However as a keen spectator, I can honestly say everyone who gave it a go seemed to have a great time and made it a very amusing watch!

Retro Gaming

Hand Baked Tweets – @handbaked

As I am absolutely hopeless at any kind of gaming, I didn’t enjoy the gaming as much as everyone seemed to, especially those who were playing against me.

I had my butt severely kicked at Street Fighter and my ultimate humiliation was served to me when I got wiped out by a non-gamer who proceeded to give me the shoeing of my life without me returning so much as a punch.

I returned to the bar, as I am a much better drinker than I am a gamer.


Live Karaoke Band – @livekaraokeband

The Live Karaoke band were undoubtedly the highlight of the night for me. In addition to being a great band in their own right and belting out some seriously good cover versions of songs from the last few decades, they bravely opened their mics to the rank and file of the SEO community.

In truth, the standard of the Karaoke appearances were pretty impressive. Either that or my frequent trips to the bar were affecting my judgment.

Due to the combination of peer pressure and alcohol, I put my name down to sing and subsequently did a pretty good job of destroying the Neil Diamond classic, Sweet Caroline. The sympathetic crowd generously offered a round of applause for my lacklustre efforts.

The praise was short lived as Rosco had also booked his place on the Karaoke stage and rather annoyingly proceeded to do an irritatingly good rendition of Build Me up Buttercup to rapturous applause and cheering.

Sweet Caroline
Build me up buttercup

Against my better judgment (mainly pressure from Rosco) the videos of the “performances” can viewed on the following links Justin and Ross.

To round off the night, BrightonSEO’s very own Kelvin Newman and friends did a very interesting and new take on Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody, the perfect end to a fantastic night.

Thanks to Ross (Rosco) Hammond for his help on putting this article together.

Justin Taylor

Justin's path into design and marketing has been anything but conventional. A random selection of career decisions saw him designing rave flyers, t-shirts and (although refusing to divulge his stage name) he allegedly did a summer stint in Gt Yarmouth as a magician before finally settling on a career in marketing.