BDDG 41st Annual Convention- Exeter 2016

A welcome message

This year's BDDG Convention is being held, for the third time this century, at the above hotel as it has proved a popular venue at previous Conventions in 2003 and 2008.


It will be run on the same format as last year; the content proved acceptable to the vast majority of delegates, new and established, judging from comment and feedback.


The Convention starts on the Wednesday with registration from 4pm onwards, followed by a Welcome Meeting before dinner and a Joint Meeting with the families after dinner.


Thursday is reserved as the Academic Day.  Rory O'Connor is collating and inviting the speakers and the programme will be posted once all speakers have confirmed.


The core of the rest of the Convention for BDDG delegates is small group work on the Twelve Steps.  A main share and then breaking into smaller groups of 6 – 8 to share experiences on the individual Steps


There are further Joint Meetings with the families on Friday evening and Sunday morning. Each morning there is an Early Bird meeting of AA at 7am and every evening  Night Owls meetings of AA, NA and AlAnon at 10pm.


There will be some free time for retail therapy, informal golf and fishing on Friday and Saturday afternoons but alternative therapeutic meetings will be provided for those who would rather stay behind.


On Saturday evening we hold the Annual BDDG Dinner.


In recent years the Family Group has attended the Academic Day as the content is pertinent to them as well.  They hold their own meetings while BDDG are having the small group meetings.


Rory will be available for individual sessions and there will be a Back to Work

session on Saturday for those with work and GMC/GDC issues.


On the pastoral side, we hope to engage a blue badge speaker to give a presentation about Exeter and it's environs on Thursday evening and arrange to attend Evensong at Exeter Cathedral on Saturday afternoon.  No transport issues; the cathedral and city centre are an easy 5 minute walk from the hotel!


The programme is designed to be of benefit to all, whether you measure your recovery in days or decades.  For the newcomers there is a unique pool of experience which is shared in a non judgemental manner and whatever your particular worries or questions, there will be answers.  Those of us who have found recovery are very keen for you to do the same!!


For the more seasoned delegates, remember the best way to keep it is to give it away and you are never too old or too sober to learn, or to ignore complacency.


So I offer you a very warm invitation to join us this year.  Booking forms will be posted shortly and payment can be made by cheque, electronic transfer or Pay Pal (if desperate!!) - PP does attract an additional fee!


If you have any questions or require any further info about any aspect of the Convention feel free to contact me.  Also, do not let the cost deter you.  We are able to offer a number of bursaries for those in difficult financial circumstances.


Look forward to seeing you in Exeter in October



Take care ODAAT


John Pierson

Convention Convenor


Convention Booking Forms

Exeter Convention Online Booking Form
Exeter Convention online booking.doc
Microsoft Word document [132.5 KB]
Exeter Convention Online Booking Form Combined
Exeter Convention online booking combine[...]
Microsoft Word document [153.0 KB]

Postal Address

If you want to return any completed forms by post- or if you want to send payment by cheque please use the following postal address:


John Pierson

5 Fluderhill


Newton Abbot


TQ12 5JD


About Exeter

Exeter is a cathedral city in Devon, England. It lies within the ceremonial county of Devon, of which it is the county town.. The city is on the River Exe about 37 miles (60 km) northeast of Plymouth and 70 miles (110 km) southwest of Bristol.


Exeter was the most south-westerly Roman fortified settlement in Britain, although there is evidence a Cornish tribe existed in Exeter before the Roman invasion. Exeter became a religious centre during the Middle Ages and into the Tudor times. Exeter Cathedral was founded in the mid 11th century. During the late 19th century, Exeter became an affluent centre for the wool trade. After the Second World War, much of the city centre was rebuilt and is now considered to be a hub for modern business and tourism in Devon and Cornwall.

The cathedral, founded in 1050 when the bishop's seat was moved from the nearby town of Crediton (birthplace of Saint Boniface) because Exeter's Roman walls offered better protection against "pirates", presumably Vikings. A statue of Richard Hooker, the 16th century Anglican theologian, who was born in Exeter, has a prominent place in the Cathedral Close.

St Nicholas Priory in Mint Lane, the remains of a monastery, later used as a private house and now a museum owned by the city council. The priory was founded in 1087 and was home to Benedictine monks for over 400 years, until it was closed and partly demolished by Henry VIII. The property has been fully renovated by Exeter City Council, and the small garden area features Tudor plants and herbs

A number of medieval churches including St Mary Steps which has an elaborate clock

The Exeter Synagogue is the third oldest synagogue in Britain, completed in 1763.

Convention Feedback from Stratford 2015

What you said about the Stratford Convention.....

  • We loved our visit with you all. We are already planning to come to Exeter, if at all possible. I hope to be in better health, but even with an awful respiratory ailment, it was a wonderful meeting. My thanks to all who made it happen
  • Venue ok, once they got used to us. Very good programme. Many thanks for putting it all together. Seems pretty good to me so no suggestions for improvement. Suspect few people in employment can manage Wednesday to Sunday
  • Great convention , happy with everything - Hotel , general organisation , food , day trips . Happy +++ , came home refreshed in every way 
  • I found the Study excellent particularly Randies Presentation, It was a good Convention  and the Organisers deserve our congratulations
  • I attended Friday-Sunday, and enjoyed the Convention immensely, good to see old friends and to make new ones
  • From the limited attendance my wife & I had there (late arrival on Friday evening due to work commitments) and the networking we were able to achieve it was all very well received
    Excellent choice of venue
    Unfortunately the soundproofing was a bit poor when the weddings were on!
    Good quiet rooms for the night owls but DIFFICULT to find!
    Grave uncertainties over the future of the Convention  in it's current format & hopefully the assimilation of the feedback from the Saturday ad hoc meeting chaired by Rory may be fruitful
    Excellent idea to have scheduled meetings on the Saturday afternoon albeit no-one went!
    Well catered for & nice food
    The idea of a members only quiet room was an absolutely superb idea - long may it continue!
    Very acceptable rooms
    In all well done on this, our 40th Annual Convention!
  • A very good event this year. I felt a bit dependent on the large American contingent to fill the ranks! But if they come every year - then fine. I hope we can get the UK numbers up next year. 
    I thought the hotel was expensive for the quality of meals etc. But I will be attending next year if alive and fit enough
  • Great first meeting for me, I am on for next year!
    Lovely to meet the American contingent and really useful to hear what they are doing as far as PHP is concerned.....we need to work on that in the UK.
    Good academic day, and good to have an afternoon fishing.
    I wonder how we can get more UK attendees, especially younger ones. I do not know if the cost is a factor, it made me pause until \I decided to claim for some of it on my study budget, or if it has not been pushed hard enough by each of the regional groups. 
    I will strongly encourage others in London to join me next time. I think that we ought to emphasise that even if not in AA/NA the workshops are a very good introduction to the twelve step programme (which as the converted we know is the most successful route to long term recovery)

BDDG convention is held every October when in addition to our members we have many visitors from overseas (particularly the U.S.A.) as well as our family members.

Our 40th Annual Convention from September 30th to October 4th 2015 will take place in Stratford-upon-Avon

If you have any questions relating to booking at the Convention please email John:

BDDG Convention- online payments

Dear all


It is possible to make on-line payments via PayPal


There is a booking fee if you use PayPal


Please contact John if you have any queries:


Alternatively, I have included the BDDG Bank Account details in the members section for money transfers



Contact us

BDDG National Secretary


Telephone: 07825 107 970


or via the contact page





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