For this years 50th anniversary of partial decriminalisation of homosexuality ‘QUEER TOURS OF LONDON – A Mince Through Time’ are being set up to bring forth the visibility of our incredible community at large and the journey to how we became who we are today. Against the backdrop of the mass closure of LGBTQI (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex) cultural spaces and support services, ‘QUEER TOURS OF LONDON’ are being developed to support London’s current queer activism, culture and performance in all its glory.
The Piccadilly Circus ‘Dilly Boys’ and their renegade hand-wiggling flirting-code, the Gay Liberation Front and their fight for recognition that led to the creation of the ‘Pride Parade’; the epicentres of revolutionary queer activity in the communes of Bethnal Green, Earls Court and Notting Hill; the ‘Hankie Code’, Adelphi Theatre’s ‘Notorious Urinal’ and the underground sexual activity of London’s theatres have all made us who we are today.
But does our Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex (LGBTQI) history matter now that the LGBTQI community can get married, have a children, join the army and become the head of Barclays Bank? Aren’t LGBTQI people all liberated now?
In the last five years alone – 25% of our nightclubs have been shut down; HIV education and prevention services continue to be slashed whilst new HIV diagnoses soar to five every week; proposals to scrap the already minimal LGBTQI sex education in schools gain popularity; hate crime continues to leave one in ten of us bleeding in alleyways; LGBTQI migrants make up a huge part of our community yet continue to be invisibilised; we still have no LGBTQI social housing plan, museum or community centre; rising right wing political parties continue to target us in their electoral propaganda whilst figures confirm we make up a quarter of UK’s homeless youth. Add the recent closure of London’s LGBTQI mental health services and – stir, serve and digest – welcome to Britain’s LGBTQI community in 2015.
So a few of us queers got together recently and decided that it’s about time to bring to life our communities incredibly rich history of love, life and struggle. Get involved / book a tour – firstname.lastname@example.org
March 2017 – Brixton Dykes on the Rampage by WinkBall
We exist to shine a light on London’s rich LGBTQI history through creative and life-affirming interactive tours. We tell the stories of London’s queer history, shedding light on the lives, spaces, identities, repression and resistance that form the backdrop of LGBTQI lives today. We do this through educational, accessible and interactive walking tours, cabarets, street-art and events that bring life to the complexities and lived experiences of our history, present and vision for the future – watch this space for the calendar of events.
Have you had a part to play in London’s iconic LGBTQI history? Do you have a story to share? Are you a pub / club / theatre / archive / institution / organisation of any time that would be interested in steering ‘Queer Tours of London’ in the right direction?
On top of the walking tours we are planning a series of cabarets, queer street-art, queer protest interventions all to draw attention to the controversies, complexities and lived experiences relating to the passing of the Sexual Offences Act and to build discussion around the realities of being part of London’s LGBTQI communities of today.We are also looking for people to be involved in a variety of associated campaigns resulting in long term tangible change for the LGBTQI community. No experience needed, just pure queer passion.
We would LOVE to hear from you. If you are interested in getting involved as an individual or as a partner organisation and if you are press please email email@example.com