Category: Archive

01.06.19 – OUTSIDE – This Is My Culture 3 – Back by Popular Demand!

‘Any right minded person would find this disgusting’

They shouldn’t be allowed out in public’

‘This Is My Culture 3!’ – Back by Popular Demand! June 1st noon at a VERY SECRET location to be announced on the day – Facebook event page here

On the 20th anniversary 2019 of George Michael’s ‘Outside’ – let’s do him proud!

Done with the sofa, done with the hall? Done with societal limitations on our sexual freedom? On 7th April 1998 in a Beverly Hills public toilet, so was George Michael. Last year ‘THIS IS MY CULTURE’ event, which celebrated George in his favourite Hampstead Heath bushes, was such a success we are bringing it back! 2019 is the 20th anniversary of his song ‘Outside’ – so let’s do him proud!

OUTSIDE – THIS IS OUR CULTURE event is to celebrate the life, courage and dignity of a great artist and LGBTQI+ icon by marking the anniversary of the day George Michael was ensnared by a ‘pretty’ policeman in an LA toilet and subsequently arrested for indecency. Join us to pay tribute to LGBTQI+ sexual freedom, enjoy performances and George’s music wafting through the trees.

If you want to strut your stuff and perform on the day / are press or want to get involved in any way please email ecoqueeruk@gmail.com ASAP. Please spread the word to all those you think will appreciate.

See the fun from last year –

April 2017 – Huffington Post – George Michael’s Life Celebrated In One Of His Cruising Spots

Urban Pictures – Cheeky George Michael Celebration in London for gay fans

Ham and High – PICTURES: ‘cheeky’ party for George Michael on Hampstead Heath

I.D. Magazine celebrating george michael and the history of cruising

VICE – ‘A True Queer Life’: Photos from an LGBTQ Dance Party to RememberGeorge Michael

I.D. Magazine – celebrating george michael and the history of cruising

WHAT

We are inviting you to help to recreate the spirit of that event. It will a celebration “somewhere Outside” but also a declaration of our rights to express our sexuality out in nature as George did. This will form part of a campaign to reclaim our “Sacred Groves” which you are welcome to join even if you cannot make this specific date.

This will be our 3rd year in this series. Our first was soon after George Michael’s death to celebrate what would have been his next birthday. Previously, he had responded to his arrest by saying “This is my culture” – which we have taken as our slogan here. The second, last year 2018, was to counter the fuss over “that” royal wedding with the “Real Qweens’ Wedding”.

WHERE

Somewhere over the rainbow – To be announced on the morning of June 1st

WHY

The purpose of ‘This IS My Culture’ queer free party are –

  • To be unashamed about the culture of cruising and sex in leafy spaces, such as those that George Michael and other Londoners frequent.
  • To build a sense of supportive community by celebrating openly with each other in a similar way as any of the public may, without needing to seek approval from authorities to do this.
  • To acknowledge the growth of the eco-sexual movement and to celebrate its practices.
  • To gain momentum for these cultures to be recognized as having a right to exist and be celebrated without legal, moral and petty harassment.
  • In addition, many among us also seek a more spiritual objective:- Since ancient times these lands have had “Sacred Groves” where nature-based spirituality has been practiced. We wish to see these set up as revered places again, our natural temples wherein to celebrate our culture. These deserve and have a right to legal recognition and protection.

WHO


The previous events have involved a broad coalition of different activists, many of whom initially came together via Sexual Avengers, who now continue as a very loose network these days. For #3 we are looking to work with people from Act Up London, from the Radical Faeries of Albion, the Queerseum project, the revived think-ins of London GLF, various queer pagans, Queer Love Rites and Queer Tours of London – And maybe your own organisation too!

We are organizing this one via Eco-Queer UK – ecoqueeruk@gmail.com because the theme this time is focusing more on the rights of eco-sexuals to secure places in nature that are respected for these purposes – as well as enjoining the diverse communities of those who practice cottaging and cruising to affirm their pride in their culture. We welcome allies and other individuals who support our aims and recognize the values of these causes. We also need more people with some specific skills and resources.Please ask newly interested parties to send an email to the above address so that we have contact details available.

Contact ecoqueeruk@gmail.com / queertoursoflondon@gmail.com


HOW

The main focus will be to stage playful re-creations of the shooting of George Michael’s video for the song “Let’s Go Outside”. The first week of June is an anniversary of this.We aim to have many folk filming – we invite all participants to use their phones (with consent) or whatever equipment they have. Professional film-makers and videographers are being lined up to make a document of this. Performers and directors are invited to create their very own scenarios which may or may not involve audience participation and play.

Creativity in costume, elaboration and antics is up to everyone present !Vox pop interviews will happen – open to all to join in if desired.We invite drummers and acoustic musicians, poets and dreamers, cruisers and cottagers, drama queens and dowdy types, ritual makers and raspberry blowers, tree-huggers and free-lovers – from a diverse range of genders, sexualities and cultures.We also invite conscious contributions from allies in the Extinction Rebellion, Climate Change activists and ecologists. We protect what we love!

This is going to be another good one !yours in nature,

Miqx – On behalf of “This is My Culture”

10.04.19 – Fantabulosa pics and video from our launch at Bishopsgate Institute

Thank you to Paolo Zeriali for our video of the ‘Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time’ archive launch at Bishopsgate Institute on 10.04.19 – book Paolo at paolo.zeriali@libero.it.


Beauuuuutiful pics from the ‘Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time’ archive launch that happened in the legendary Bishopsgate Institute On 10.04.19 – archival home to radical movements across the land – thank you to Holly Buckle for the pics (book Holly at holly.buckle.18@ucl.ac.uk), to all the Bishopsgate Institute fam (contact Stef Dickers at Stefan.Dickers@bishopsgate.org.uk to start your archive), everyone who made it such a fantabulous knees-up and all fighting for QUEER LOVE AND POWER EVERYWHERE!

The night was in tribute to the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprisings and the birth of the Gay Liberation Front (GLF) who started Pride. Get involved in the ongoing Gay Liberation Front movement – email queertoursoflondon@gmail.com

There’s a handful of spaces left for the Bishopsgate Institute / Queer Tours tours – get booking click here

4 May – Out of the Archives and into the Streets: Explore Bishopsgate’s collections and find out how queer archives are created and used. Learn about the impact of gentrification on queer spaces and movements, respond to the corporatisation of Pride and unlock the revolutionary potential of the queer community.

7 May – Tour of the City: Join Andrew and Dani Dinger on this excavation of the City of London’s LGBT+ past — long since buried, but far from forgotten. Take in St Paul’s Cathedral, the north bank of the Thames and 2,000 years of history.

15 June – Tours of Earl’s Court. Hear stories of how queers fought against the police in the 1970’s to keep their leather bar, the Coleherne, open with your GLF tour guides Andrew Lumsden and Stuart Feather.

4 July – Tour of Queer Black Brixton – with Gay Liberation Front activists and Kevin Wilson: Explore Brixton’s radical black queer history with members of the original Gay Liberation Front, alongside a newer generation of black LGBTQIA+ activists. Learn about the Rock Against Fascism festival, counterculture zines such as Blackout, and black queer squatting movements.

To learn more about LGBTQ+ culture and history through Bishopsgate Institute’s upcoming courses, events, tours and public accessible Archive Collections, check out the website – www.bishopsgate.org.uk

Book here for Earls Court, Brixton and the City Queer Tours!

In partnership with the fantastic Bishopsgate Institute we are excited to announce the following tours (get in touch with Stefan.Dickers@bishopsgate.org.uk to deposit your queer archives!)

Tour of the City Tuesday 07 May 6pm – Steps of St. Paul’s Cathedral – Book here ASAP. Very limited spaces. P

Picture – cture – Moll Cutpurse Roaring Girls of Queer London pic

Tour guides Dani Singer and Andrew Lumsden

The City of London – a law unto itself, with over two thousand years of history. A global financial centre, and the place where if you dig down far enough, you’ll surely stumble across a Roman Phallus Amulet or two. Take a trip to St Paul’s Cathedral and bask in its reverence as you reflect on the site’s extended history as the central cottaging station for gay men throughout the ages.

Hear how, in 1880, the City of London Corporation became so concerned about the trafficking of women to the Continent, that they kicked off the legislation which led to the 1885 criminalising all queer men.  And take in stunning views of the River Thames from the north banks, remembering all the while that it’s the only thing separating you from the Blackfriars monastery on the other side, and it’s activities of questionable morality within.

Not the City you knew? Join Andrew and Dani on this excavation of the City of London’s LGBT+ past – long since buried, but far from forgotten.

Tours of Earl’s Court Saturday 15 June 6pm – Book here ASAP. Very limited spaces. Meeting point –The Coleherne Arms, 271 Old Brompton Rd, Kensington, London SW5 9JA

Tour guideS – Andrew Lumsden and Stuart Feather

Picture – Colherene 

Queer Tours of London launched in 2017 for the 50th anniversary of partial decriminalisation of homosexuality in Britain. The tours exist to shine a light on London’s rich LGBTQ+ history through interactive tours, artistic interventions, protests and informative events. On this tour you will take in some of the sites of Earls Court. You will hear stories of how queers fought against the police in the 1970’s to keep their leather bar, the Coleherne, open. We will visit Brompton cemetery, where two male lovers of long ago quietly arranged to be buried together, and nobody noticed. Finally, we will take a stroll down Wharfedale Street to the location of a now famous photo from the 1980sof a pretty policeman tempting gay men.

Tour of Brixton, South London Thursday 04 July  6-8pm £11.00 to £14.00 Book here ASAP very limited spaces!

Picture – Rukus! – South London Gay community Centre pic 

Meeting point: Windrush Square, Brixton.

Tour guide – Kevin Wilson and Ted Brown

Explore Brixton’s radical black queer history with members of the original Gay Liberation Front, alongside a newer generation of black LGBTQIA+ activists.

Learn about the pioneering movements which sprung from The South London Gay Liberation who were actively engaged in protests and pickets across London such as the South London Squatter movement.

Also the Gay Black Group and the Claimant’s Union who picketed shops that refused to sell the newspaper Gay News, campaigned in solidarity with black, lesbian and women’s groups and catalysed the Anti-Nazi League march for the Rock Against Fascism festival in Brockwell Park.

Learn from London’s historic revolutionary activists such as Olive Morris, and delve into movements that have confronted homophobia, racism and sexism through counterculture zines such as Blackout, black queer squatting movements, club nights, healthcare struggles and how this can inform the ongoing struggle for absolute freedom today. See the phenomental ‘Rukus! Archive’ for more in the meantime!

04.05.19 – ‘Out of the Archives and into the Streets’ Workshop at Bishopsgate Institute

11-5pm at The Bishopsgate Institute – Bishopsgate Institute, 230 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 4QH – venue fully accessible

What are the roles of archives in documenting queer histories? How can they empower our present and help build our future? In this workshop with Bishopsgate Institute and Queer Tours of London, you’ll explore our collections and learn how queer archives are created and used. We chart the impact of gentrification on queer spaces and movements, respond to the corporatisation of Pride and unlock the revolutionary potential of the queer community. 

In this workshop you will be able to explore the breadth of queer archives at the Bishopsgate Institute and gain an understanding of the process between how LGBT archives are created and how they are put to use by artists and activists to bring their legacy into life today. This workshop is an explosive account to inspire a new generation of revolutionaries to question authority, imagine and bring to life the queer utopias we still desperately need to. Exploring the last 50 years of LGBT activism in the UK it chronologies the key events and interventions that have changed the status quo. From this we can understand that we ‘come into’ – rather than ‘come-out’ of – an incredible herstory to reclaim.

Please book tickets here. The capacity is only 25 so get in there quick! Price is £14 (£11 conc.)

Have a question? Send us an email or give us a call on: 020 7392 9200. 

See previous press stories here!

In the Press

Vice – ‘Meet the activists running London’s first Queer Tour

Evening Standard – What you’ll learn about LGBTQ+ history on a queer tour of the West End

We recently supported the recent – BBC Feature – ‘Where is our Queer Museum’ street-art action

The Independent – From Soho to Vauxhall: The man behind London’s first LGBTQ history tour

April 2017 – Huffington Post – George Michael’s Life Celebrated In One Of His Cruising Spots

Queer Power Chechnya Protest – Where next?

On Holocaust Memorial Day 2019 – 27th January – hundreds of people from London’s LGBT+ community and their allies protested outside the Russian Embassy in London against the new wave of brutal attacks against LGBT+ people that are taking place in Chechnya, Russia. The message was ‘NEVER AGAIN EVER!’ and ‘NONE OF US ARE FREE UNTIL WE ALL ARE!’ See full report here

Thank you for these fab photos Holly Buckle (book Holly at holly.buckle.18@ucl.ac.uk)

As we can see in the news and in our streets the struggle is far from over – the recent attack of the ‘Archangelsk LGBT community center’ in Russia and now Brunei’s new laws punishing gay sex and adultery by stoning offenders to death and of course our ever growing austerity-driven hostile-envvironment hell for the LGBTQI+ community here in Britain – we need these targeted solidarity queer-power protests more and more!

As protests go it’s pretty easy to organise – we have the people, the giant flag, the shoes, the placards, the sound system, the press and of course FABULOUS ANGRY QUEERS!

Are you up for helping organise further protests? Please email queertoursoflondon@gmail.com ASAP – we need you!

Some people think that ‘Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time’ is just for exploring queer history – but we don’t rest on our laurels – we harness history as a propeller for change today. Get involved. Keep on mincing. Looking forward to hear from you 🙂 All details at www.queertoursoflondon.com – please support this Saturday April 6th 2pm Demonstration against the Sultan of Brunei and please support the Russian LGBT+ Network here

Thank you for these fab photos John Banyard and Steve Taylor for this photo above and the ones below!

‘Gay Liberation Front’ Dance Party – 50th Anniversary Special- Photos!

Thank you to Levi Hinds for the photos! Thank you to all the special performances, DJ sets and dances from the original GLF members, the phenomenal NOSCAR winning Nash Paragon Langley, Alexis Gregory and Team Angelica’s ‘RIOT ACT’ showBrighton’s very own Afropunk goddess ‘Baby’, songs from soul-child Sarah Angel (sarahangelstyling@outlook.com), winner of ‘Pride’s Got Talent’ Lamont RickettsPop/Soul singer and choir director Jordan Charles (Jrscharles@hotmail.co.uk), the cast from upcoming ‘Arcola’ show ‘They Them We Us’ (danisinger121@hotmail.com) and Queer London DJ legends Auntie Maureen (ask@auntiemaureen.info) – Music Curator & Performance DJ and Beckah, all at REDON and last but not least the founding members of Pride in London – the Gay Liberation Front!

Thank you to all for the – ‘Gay Liberation Front’ Dance Party – 50th Anniversary Special- Videos / Where next?

Thank you to Levi Hinds and Holly Buckle for the photos! Thank you to all the special performances, DJ sets and dances from the original GLF members, the phenomenal NOSCAR winning Nash Paragon Langley, Alexis Gregory and Team Angelica’s ‘RIOT ACT’ showBrighton’s very own Afropunk goddess ‘Baby’, songs from soul-child Sarah Angel (sarahangelstyling@outlook.com), winner of ‘Pride’s Got Talent’ Lamont RickettsPop/Soul singer and choir director Jordan Charles (Jrscharles@hotmail.co.uk), the cast from upcoming ‘Arcola’ show ‘They Them We Us’ (danisinger121@hotmail.com) and Queer London DJ legends Auntie Maureen (ask@auntiemaureen.info) – Music Curator & Performance DJ and Beckah, all at REDON and last but not least the founding members of Pride in London – the Gay Liberation Front!  Thank you to all the organisers including the fantabulous Jason JonesJoshua HubbardKiku Aruba Basu and all at REDON! Mega Love to Joseph Wilson for the film above – contact Joseph at www.josephwilsonfilms.co.uk

All donations went Stansted 15 court costs and a year of grassroots activism to reclaim Pride for all on this special year. Get in touch and get involved – all details at www.queertoursoflondon.com / queertoursoflondon@gmail.com – WE ARE HERE! WE ARE STILL VERY QUEER! 😉

To book any of the artists email queertoursoflondon@gmail.com and we shall put you directly in touch.

Where Next?

Gay Liberation Front (GLF) ‘Think Ins’ – Reclaim Pride

This is the space for all Gay Liberation Front (GLF) Activists and new friends to connect, celebrate and plot for the upcoming significant anniversaries –

2019 – 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots
2020 – 50th anniversary of GLF UK
2022 – 50th anniversary of Pride

We are having monthly ‘think in’s’ to develop our demands and action plans. Everyone new or old to the movement and who is committed to ‘LIBERATION FOR ALL’ is very welcome.

Upcoming ‘Think In’s’  – all at the same venue – Library Reception, London School of Economics and Political Science, 10 Portugal St, London WC2A 2HD, UK

Think In 6 – Wednesday March 20th 6-8.30pm – facebook event page here

It’s easy. I ordered the ramp and access sticker in a day, and put in the doorbell overnight. ‘Why should people have to question whether they are allowed to come. All of a sudden you allow people that might not have thought they could come into the venue that they care about us.’ James Bartlett, Manager, Old Comptons.

“It’s great to see that more LGBTQ venues in Soho are getting serious about inclusion and equality, making the changes that ensure their disabled customers can have a night out without access stress.
More than twenty years after the Disability Discrimination Act, it’s just unacceptable that there are still venues out there turning away disabled customers. A ramp costs £50 – why would you not want to comply with the law?” 
Lianna Etkind, Queer Disability Justice activist

Chris Nagel has been the head doorman at Freedom for over 19 years. He said: “We are putting in access because it is a must. Everyone should be able to come into the venue.”

Shane Knight, who works at the Duke of Wellington, said: “We’ve had a ramp for years. It’s about access for all”.

Karl Nixon, Manager at Admiral Duncan and ‘Queer Disability’ activists

Karl Nixon, from the Admiral Duncan pub, said: “We got a ramp, and we’re going to get a sticker [to let people know a ramp is available], because it’s important to the gay community and beyond. We have a lot of people coming in with wheelchairs now, it has made a difference”.

Notes to Editors:

1. Kevin Wilson can be contacted for interview on queertoursoflondon@gmail.com / Photo credits – Holly Buckle / Video credits – Sophie Falkenburg

‘Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time’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. ‘Queer Tours of London’ are for everyone in London – visitors and residents – to be inspired by our history and get involved in our future.We also welcome requests for special-themed tours, private tours and all kinds of collaborations. Contact us on queertoursoflondon@gmail.com for all involvement / press requests / collaborations. 

3. The Equality Act 2010, which replaced the Disability Discrimination Act of 1995, makes it unlawful not to make ‘reasonable adjustments’ to enable disabled people to access goods and services. Reasonable adjustments may include include a ramp; a lift; a large print menu or a hearing loop. More information at www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/multipage-guide/using-service-reasonable-adjustments-disabled-people

4. Coverage of the July 2017 action: https://www.vice.com/en_uk/article/a33gjg/the-highs-and-lows-of-clubbing-with-a-physical-disability

5. The Equality ‘Zap’ was in the tradition of ‘Zaps’ originally organised by gay activists in the 1970s. ‘Zaps’ have continued to be used by LGBTQI activists throughout the 1980s and 1990s and beyond. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zap_(action)

Venue2018 Changes Made
Admiral DuncanHave ramp – but don’t have a sign in window – GM wasn’t aware should have one. But very happy to talk to us and accommodating.
ComptonsJames was really amazing. They had a ramp and disability sign. Talked about how a few years ago there was an incident in which they didn’t know where the ramp was, since then they have taken changes to make the venue way more accessible.Has taken huge changes.
BalansSeemed super disinterested and uncaring.“I have only been here 9 months”Saw it as a structural issues that just wasn’t in his hands!Really poor accessibility – no ramp. Didn’t commit to any promises
Yard BarIs movable ramp, but not visible. Don’t have sign letting people know but happy to put sticker up.
Duke of WellingtonsRamp available.
FreedomKevin had spoken to Chris Nagel, head doorman a few weeks ago, and he said he would put up visibility sign – not there  yet.However very receptive, and said would put in sign in 2 weeks max.
Movable ramp is there, but supervisor didn’t know how to use it.

27.02.19 – The ‘Gay Liberation Front’ Dance Party – 50th Anniversary Special!

The ‘Gay Liberation Front’ Dance Party / Fundraiser – 50th Anniversary Special! – Get your tickets quick – click here – limited spaces!Facebook event page here

50 years ago a rag-tag group of queers, queens, dissidents and whores started a revolution. This year – on the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots they have re-united to reclaim the Pride they started!

Join us for the (re)launch of the ‘Gay Liberation Front’ in London with special performances, DJ sets and dances from the original GLF members + a new generation of artists in tribute! Come cheer on the 50th birthday speeches from the Gay Liberation Front legends themselves and enjoy the nights entertainment. Highlights include celebrated ‘RIOT ACT’ show, queer classical musical pioneer ‘Barbs’, Brighton’s very own Afropunk goddess ‘Baby’, songs from Sarah Angel and Queer London DJ legend  Auntie Maureen with a DJ set spanning Queer London from 1930s Soho jazz to contemporary queer electronica, with every decade in between – on Auntie’s dance floor everyone is welcome – and more!


All donations to a year of grassroots activism to reclaim Pride for all on this special year.  

PARTY! CELEBRATE! BUILD QUEER POWER!

Come and join us for our LGBT+ History Month party and get involved in the year of action.

WHEN – Wednesday 27th Feb Show 7-9.30pm / DJ’s and dancing 9-midnight.

WHERE – REDON, Railway Arches, 289 Cambridge Heath Rd, London E2 9HA – Wheelchair accessible.

DRESS CODE – FANTABULOSA

TICKETS – Broke £5 Unwaged £7.50 Standard £10 Solidarity £15.

There are a handful of free tickets are for LGBT+ migrants and for LGBT+ folk struggling with housing. If this is you and / or you have any issues being able to afford the ticket please email us ASAP – queertoursoflondon@gmail.com. All profits will go into a Summer of events and activism to catalyse a new set of radical demands by the activists who started Pride. 

Get your ticket here! 
https://www.outsavvy.com/event/2403/the-gay-liberation-front-dance-party-50th-anniversary-special-tickets

All details at www.queertoursoflondon.com – 

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