Category: Latest News

For Immediate Release – Queer Tours of London sheds light on un-told Hackney history

For Immediate Release – Queer Tours of London sheds light on un-told Hackney history

Drag nuns on the 55 bus, the grave of a Drag King and a gay cabaret in The Blitz. Uncover Hackney’s exciting history withQueer Tours of London as part of the Council’s Hackney Pride 365 celebrations.

Hackney has a fascinating and not-to-be forgotten LGBTQI+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex) history. Starting outside Stoke Newington Town Hall Queer Tours of London will take people on a journey, telling the stories of Hackney’s queer history, shedding light on the lives, spaces, identities, repression and resistance that form the backdrop of LGBTQI+ lives today.

The tours are taking place as part of Hackney Council’s Hackney Pride 365 festival. A community led series of celebrations aiming to connect communities, increase LGBTQI+ visibility and immortalise the often un-recorded history of LGBTQI+ life in the borough.

Dan de la Motte, Queer Tours of London tour guide said: “I am so proud to be co-leading the Queer Tour of Hackney with Nell James Grace, as part of Hackney Pride 365. When people think of LGBT and Queer history in our capital they may think of Soho, and rightly so, yet it is this borough that has such a rich and diverse story to tell. A history that is witty, poignant, powerful and personal. I can’t wait to bring it back to life for Queer Tours of London.”

Dan Glass, Co-Founder of Queer Tours of London said: “We are based in Hackney, the history of queer life here is extremely rich. The tours for Hackney Pride 365 will cover history from arts, activism, sass, cabaret, resistance, oppression and much more from the people who were there at the time and have changed the course of Hackney history.”

There are two interactive walking tours taking place, Saturday 23 and 30 June. The tours start at 2pm outside Stoke Newington Town Hall and last two hours. Tours are fully accessible.

There is a suggested donation of £10 for the tour. book on outsavvy here 

Find out more about Queer Tours of London by visiting www.queertoursoflondon.com or emailingqueertoursoflondon@gmail.com. Find out more about Hackney Pride 365 by visiting www.hackney.gov.uk/lgbt or follow thecouncil on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

About Queer Tours of London:

For this year’s 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality ‘QUEER TOURS OF LONDON – A Mince Through Time’ are bringing forth the visibility of London’s incredible LGBTQI+ community and the journey to how the community became what it is today. Against the backdrop of the mass closure of LGBTQI+ cultural spaces and support services, QUEER TOURS OF LONDON is supporting London’s current queer activism, culture and performance in all its glory.

QUEER TOURS OF LONDON exists to shine a light on London’s rich LGBTQI+ history through creative and life-affirming interactive tours. Telling 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. 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. 

Saturday June 23 – 4-6pm – Meet at Stoke Newington Town Hall. Suggested donations £10

Saturday June 30 – 4-6pm – Meet at Stoke Newington Town Hall. Suggested donations £10

Hackney Pride 365 presents Queer Tours of London history walks – June 23rd and 30th

Drag Queen nuns on the 55 bus, the grave of a drag king, and gay cabaret during The Blitz… uncover Hackney’s fascinating and not-to-be forgotten LGBTQI+ history with an interactive walking tour.

As part of the Council’s Hackney Pride 365 celebrations, Queer Tours of London will take people on a journey, telling the stories of the borough’s queer history, shedding light on the events, spaces, identities, repression and resistance that form a backdrop for LGBTQI+ lives today.

Read about our last Hackney tour! – Transgender nuns, gay cabaret and the poll tax: history tour with a difference uncovers Hackney’s LGBT heritage’ Hackney Gazzette

Sign up to the facebook page here. To find out more and to book, visit: www.queertoursoflondon.com; book on outsavvy here or e-mail: queertoursoflondon@gmail.com. All press requests please email queertoursoflondon@gmail.com

Our press release – For Immediate Release – Queer Tours of London sheds light on un-told Hackney history

Walk 1: Saturday, 23 June, 4-6pm. Meet outside Stoke Newington Town Hall, N16 0JR.
Walk 2: Saturday, 30 June, 4-6pm. Meet outside Stoke Newington Town Hall, N16 0JR.
There is a suggested donation of £10. Walks take 2 hours and are fully accessible.
To find out more and to book, visit: www.queertoursoflondon.com; or e-mail: queertoursoflondon@gmail.com

For Immediate Release – 10.5.18. The Alternative George Michael Royal Wedding

For Immediate Release – 10.5.18.

THE ALTERNATIVE ROYAL WEDDING PARTY ON HAMPSTEAD HEATH TO CELEBRATE GEORGE MICHAEL’S LIFE, TALENT,  & COURAGE IN PROMOTING SEXUAL FREEDOM

Saturday May 19th 2018 – 1pm- Bandstand, Golders Hill Park, Hampstead Heath – 

A coalition of London’s LGBTQI+ community groups (1*) are holding a  ‘George Michael – This is My Culture‘ free party to remember the Queer Icon’s life, talent and courage in celebrating sexual freedom.  2018 also marks 20 years since the release of his song, ‘Outside’ which was George’s response to being ensnared by a ‘pretty’ policeman in an LA toilet, arrested for indecency and subsequently cruelly publicly outed.

The event is back by popular demand after last year hundreds gathered on the Heath. This year the party is being held on the date of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal wedding to provide an alternative celebration of love for the LGBTQI+ community. Guests are being asked to wear their wedding frocks. 

“As Meghan Markle and Prince Harry don their crowns and bow down to the Queen, join us for this very special occasion where we celebrate ‘OUR CULTURE’ where public displays of affection are everyone’s duties and we show the world that QUEERS ARE FABULOUS, and we are never going underground.” Dan Glass, Queer Tours of London, A Mince Through Time

The event will also help raise awareness of the work of ‘The Outside Project’, which supports and campaigns for the homeless LGBTQI+ people. Any profit from the event will also go to the charities services (*2).

“George Michael was dragged through the press for cottaging when I was 13 years old; this was my introduction to homophobia and shaming.  His defiant response – Outside – became the anthem for my queer youth. ‘This is My Culture’ is a beautiful way to celebrate the life, activist and sexual freedom and power that I feel he gave our community.” Carla Ecola. Outside Project Director.

2018 is also the 30th anniversary of ‘Section 28’ when Margaret Thatcher tried to ban the public promotion of homosexuality with ‘Clause 28’.  While this nasty law was abolished in 2000 we aim to also highlight the issues that the LGBTQI+ community still faces, and engage people to be more active in the fight for LGBTQI+ rights, health, wellbeing and safety.

“No longer with us but with presence stronger than ever, we gather at the world famous cruising  area on Hampstead Heath, to ‘Go Outside’ in honour of George Michael. His every statement and action after his nasty public outing in 1997, said screw the judgement of others. We dance and sing and roll together and shout out, in the immortal words of George, “This Is My Culture!” Nell Andrew, organiser, Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time guide and cruising guru

“George Michael was a Great British Gay Icon. Hugely talented and never afraid to knock out a tune, and much else too, in defence of his and other people’s sexual freedom for the LGBTQ+ community.” Alex Green ‘Loud and Queerly’ entertainer and director of campaign to save the Black Cap, Black Cap Campaign

“Throughout history our bodies and same sex desire have been sanctioned by the moral compass of the law.  We may have lost a legend last Christmas but ‘F**k off this is my culture’ is George Michael’s liberating mantra; advocating sexual freedom mapped in the landscape of cruising grounds and public toilets. It’s here where his memory lives on in our celebration of his life and work and unapologetically taking our love outside from the closets and into the trees. Damien Arness-Dalton, Queerseum

Main contacts

Dan Glass – queertoursoflondon@gmail.com / 07717811747

Alex Green – alex@loudandqueerly.com / 07779580393

www.queertoursoflondon.com / queertoursoflondon@gmail.com / Facebook page here

SUPPORTING INFORMATION

Media links from 2017 –

April 2017 – Huffington Post – George Michael’s Life Celebrated In One Of His Cruising Spots – http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/george-michael-sex-party-held-to-celebrate-cruising_uk_58eba928e4b0ca64d917ea20

April 2017 – Ham and High – PICTURES: ‘cheeky’ party for George Michael on Hampstead Heath – http://www.hamhigh.co.uk/news/pictures-cheeky-party-for-george-michael-on-hampstead-heath-1-4968542

April 2017 – I.D. Magazine celebrating george michael and the history of cruising – https://i-d.vice.com/en_uk/article/mbveeb/celebrating-george-michael-and-the-history-of-cruising

April 2017 – VICE – ‘A True Queer Life’: Photos from an LGBTQ Dance Party to RememberGeorge Michael

April 2017 – I.D. Magazine – celebrating george michael and the history of cruising – https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/mbveeb/celebrating-george-michael-and-the-history-of-cruising-us-translation

ITV – HUNDREDS PARTY ON HAMPSTEAD HEATH FOR GEORGE MICHAEL – HTTP://WWW.ITV.COM/NEWS/LONDON/2017-04-09/HUNDREDS-PARTY-ON-HAMPSTEAD-HEATH-FOR-GEORGE-MICHAEL/

Notes to Editors

*1 The Outside Project, Loud and Queerly and Ecoqueers, in partnership with Queer Tours of London

*2 ‘The Outside Project’ is a LGBTIQ+ community shelter & centre. Independent, grassroots project led by queer ex-homeless, homelessness professionals, community & activists. wwwlgbtiqoutside.org/

26.05.18 3-4pm – Queer Tours of London present: Soho’s now-lost nighttime spaces

26.05.18 3-4pm – Queer Tours of London present: Soho’s now-lost nighttime spaces

We cannot empower our queer present without understanding our queer past. On this 1 hour walking tour of Soho, come and discover some of the now-lost queer nighttime spaces, the incredible queer pioneers that ran these spaces, and the clientele that filled them. Learn about the oppressive police actions, such as undercover surveillance and raids, as well as the inspirational stories of the fight for queer liberation.

This tour is in partnership with the Peter Tatchell Foundation, who fight for human rights and justice across the globe.

The tour is led by Dan de la Motte, which proceeds being split between Queer Tours of London and the ongoing work of the Peter Tatchell Foundation. As this tour is a fundraiser for both groups, the cost is £15pp.

Contacts: Dan de la Motte for QToL on queertoursoflondon@gmail.com and Pliny Soocoormanee for PTF. All questions and press requests to queertoursoflondon@gmail.com

26.05.18 12 noon – “If you can ignore the background news” Queer Tour of London – Section 28 special

“If you can ignore the background news” Queer Tour of London – Section 28 special – facebook event page here

***When and Where***

Saturday May 26th meeting point at 12 noon sharp at the Millicent Fawcett Suffragette statue, Parliament Square, Westminster, London SW1P 3JX – nearest tube station ‘Westminster’ with your tour guide Holly. The tour ends at 2pm at ‘The Kings Arms’ 23 Poland St, Soho, London W1F 8QL

Followed by ‘Femmetopia Festival: Deeds not Words’ – Protest 101 // Intersectional support for LGBTQI / QTIPOC protest. [Further details to come]

***Booking Details and Press Requests ***

Please book here on the outsavvy link. Suggested donation £10. If you can afford more please do and if you can’t no worries please email us on the address below. All profits go to ‘The Outside Project’* 

All press requests, bookings and all questions please email queertoursoflondon@gmail.com.

Please book early to avoid disappointment there are very limited spaces!

***About***

To celebrate the iconic invasion of BBC news on May 23rd 1988 and to   commemorate the 30th anniversary of ‘Section 28’ come on an informative journey of queer sexual freedom, something that most queer people have been denied. Come and hear from the activists who helped overturn this iconic homophobic legislation, explore London’s rich herstory of women’s and lesbian protest movements and join the ongoing movement for radical queer freedom.

Margaret Thatcher introduced ‘Section 28’ in 1987 which banned the promotion of homosexuality in public institutions at a time when HIV / AIDS was at plague proportions. A group of friends met the ‘Never Going Underground – Repeal Section 28’ protest and knew something had to be done. So on 2nd February 1988 when the House of lords were due to vote in favour, instead of sitting at home depressed they decided to change the world – What did they do?

They abseiled into the House of Lords in protest. A few months later they chained themselves to Buckingham palace protesting section 28 and commemorating 70th anniversary of partial suffrage and then infamously invaded the 6 O’clock news on May 23rd 1988 the evening before section 28 became law where Sue Lawler the presenter meekly said ‘Please ignore the background noise’ –  and the rest is herstory.

*** Join the struggle for lesbian freedom ***

If you want to continue the struggle for LGBTQIA+ freedom for all in London and beyond come explore and deepen your skills on effective disruptive activism, escalating strategically, building momentum, D.I.Y. Ethic, Discipline in activism, The role of radical lesbian movements and be part of a movement to agitate for more radical lesbian rights and spaces in London today.

So come and join this very special ‘Queer Tour of London’ and hear from the activists themselves, Pay tribute to those who overturned it and Join the movement for queer sexual freedom and education for all.

*** About Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time ***

In 2018 ‘Queer Tours of London’ and friends are reclaiming the teaching of queer culture and taking charge of how it should be taught because as queer people we refuse to ever be silenced. Today we are louder and prouder than ever before. Launched in 2017 for the 50th anniversary of partial decriminalisation of homosexuality ‘QUEER TOURS OF LONDON – A Mince Through Time’ exists to bring forth the visibility of our incredible community at large and the journey to how we became who we are today. Find out more at www.queertoursoflondon.com

If you have Section 28 and related materials that you would like to archive please contact the Bishopsgate Institute on library@bishopsgate.org.uk

“Children are being taught they have an inalienable right to be gay. All of those children are being cheated of a sound start in life.” – Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, October 9, 1987.

‘The Outside Project’ is a LGBTIQ+ community shelter & centre. Independent, grassroots project led by queer ex-homeless, homelessness professionals, community & activists. www.lgbtiqoutside.org/

 

 

11-14.7.18. – Andrew Lumsden: A Retrospective – proudly supported by Queer Tours and Queerseum

QUEER TOURS OF LONDON – A MINCE THROUGH TIME in association with QUEERSEUM present: Andrew Lumsden: A Retrospective of the last 50 Years. 

11-14th July 2018 – Platform Southwark – 1 Joan Street, SE1 8BS, London, UK – Facebook event page here 

ANDREW LUMSDEN was very respectable until he encountered the Gay Liberation Front in London in 1970 but has been less respectable since. He has been drawing since he was a kid and hopes all the brilliant artists like Jean Claude Thevenin, Kate Charlesworth and David Shenton, who drew for Gay News in the 1970s, where for a while he was editor, will be celebrated in 2022, the paper’s 50th anniversary.

The Retrospective is curated by DAN DE LA MOTTE on behalf of QUEER TOURS OF LONDON (QToL). Dan is a researcher, writer, tour guide and performer for QToL.

May 19th 2018 1pm – This is My Culture – Back by Popular Demand – ‘The Real Qweens’ Wedding’

This is My Culture – Back by Popular Demand – ‘The Real Qweens’ Wedding’ – May 19th 2018 from 1pm. Pick up points to be taken into the woods at Golders Hill bandstand and Jack Straws Castle. Facebook page here

Press release here – please share – For immediate Release 11.5.18 – The Alternative George Michael Royal Wedding

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! 2018 is the 20th anniversary of his song ‘Outside’ – so let’s do him proud!

As Meghan Markle and Prince Harry adorn their crowns and bow down to the queen, join us for this very special occasion – ‘The Real Qweens’ Queer Wedding’. On this dutiful day we will celebrate ‘OUR CULTURE’ where public displays of affection are everyone’s duties and we show the world that QUEERS ARE FABULOUS. 30 years ago in 1988, Margaret Thatcher tried to ban the public promotion of homosexuality with ‘Clause 28’ – today, let’s celebrate our fierceness, our sass and show the world that we are still ‘NEVER GOING UNDERGROUND’.

The 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 in Hampstead Heath in all your royal outfits, 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 queertoursoflondon@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

April 2017 – Urban Pictures – Cheeky George Michael Celebration in London for gay fans

April 2017 – Ham and High – PICTURES: ‘cheeky’ party for George Michael on Hampstead Heath

April 2017 – I.D. Magazine celebrating george michael and the history of cruising

April 2017 – VICE – ‘A True Queer Life’: Photos from an LGBTQ Dance Party to RememberGeorge Michael

April 2017 – I.D. Magazine – celebrating george michael and the history of cruising

Contact – www.queertoursoflondon.com / queertoursoflondon@gmail.com

‘Unfinished Business – LGBTQI+ Voices of the Revolution’ Showstomper!

A phenomenal end to the ‘Unfinished Business – LGBTQI+ Voices of the Revolution’ week of action to celebrate our worldwide LGBTQI+ community and bring strength, love and agitation until we are all truly free. Thank you Manu Valcarce for the amazing video – contact Manu at www.manuvalcarce.co.uk


First and foremost – LONDON LOVES YOU Kat Kai Kol-Kes, no words do justice to what an incredible example of humanity you are and what a role model you are to London, sassing up the streets as a tour guide with ‘Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time’ and lighting up the stage as you hosted our finale show on Sunday. We look forward to having you back soon!
 
THANK YOU to our incredible leading LGBTQI+ artists showcasing dance, spoken word, electric and acapella songs and much more including SJ Soulist (Poetry & Rap), Dan McBride (Drag),Kat Kai Kol-Kes (Singing), Iviee Mercutio (Poetry & Rap), Bimini-Bon Boulash (Pole Dancing) Tommy Hibbitts, Sinthia Arefin (Justice for Xulhaz Mannan and Mahbub Tonoy) – to all at Rich Mix, Carla Ecola and Tam at the Outside Project, Nell James Grace Damien Arness Dalton Dan de la Motte and all the Queer Tours of London family, Aderonke Apata and all the African Rainbow Family, Ruth Daniel Alison Surtees Shereen Andrea Bobbi Mac and all at In Place of War and GRRRL for your amazing support and inspiration, Luca Er Baghetta Modesti for your relentless graphic design talent, Manu Valcarce Holly Buckle and Dan Hall for being the best comms crew ever, Sesange Edwin and all at African Equality Foundation, Peter Tatchell and all at the Foundation, Shaan Surat Knan and all the Rainbow Pilgrims family, everyone else I’ve missed out and everyone in the entire universe on the frontline of QUEER LOVE.
 
Please join the incredible Sinthia Arefin and Mazharul Islam at 6pm tomorrow – 25.4.18 – at Bangladesh High Commission in London, 28 Queens Gate, SW7 5JA South Kensington as its been two years since the killing of Bangladeshi LGBT activists to unite and raise our voices to ask for justice for Xulhaz and Tonoy. A Luta Continua!
 
Get in touch for any requests as well as to be put you in touch with any of performers and thanks again! Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time – queertoursoflondon@gmail.com / www.queertoursoflondon.com
 
   

‘LGBT+ Voices of the Revolution’ week of action hits the streets of London’

Dear friends, 
 

Thank you for everyone who made yesterdays ‘LGBT+ Voices of the Revolution’ tour of London such a powerful day. A true rollercoaster of emotions, sharing and agitating for LGBT+ Community Power and to stand up against the war of inequality in the Commonwealth! 

Thank you so much Dan for the amazing  Queer Tours of London / Commonwealth Protest photos! Pls share the photos far and wide and see Dan’s ‘Read Me’ note for how they should be distributed.
Here’s all the organisational contacts from yesterday. The struggle for global LGBT+ rights continues! Thank you again, Kat, dan and all at Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through Time – see you soon!

 

ABOUT ‘UNFINISHED BUSINESS’ – Upcoming tours and a performance and spoken word platform for LGBTQIA+ freedom world-wide

In association with ‘In Place of War’, ‘African Rainbow Family’, ‘African Equality Foundation’ ‘Rainbow Pilgrims’, ‘Peter Tatchell Foundation’ and more Unfinished Business – LGBTQI+ Voices of the Revolution exists to celebrate and support the next generation of artists, activists and change-makers dedicated to ending homophobia, transphobia and all forms of oppression and provide public cultural platforms that will raise awareness outside the CHOGM conference walls agitating for a global movement of creative activism to decriminalise homosexuality everywhere and provide true freedom for all. 

Unfinished Business – LGBTQI+ Voices of the Revolution is a showcase that brings together an inspirational line up of LGBTQI+ musicians from countries where it is illegal to be LGBTQI+ to collaborate, create and perform with each other. Bringing together LGBTQI+ artists from countries around the world where it is illegal to be queer we will showcase musicians and artists whose work expression is both unapologetically Queer and uncompromisingly anti-racist. Think radical and outrageous revolutionaries who struggles are multi-layered and universal: beautiful voices of global and intersectional resistance.

With your host Botswana born Trans* ARTivist, Katlego Kai Kolanyane-Kesupile (Kol-Kes) 
Katlego Kai Kolanyane-Kesupile (Kol-Kes) is a groundbreaking ARTivist, she uses various art forms for human rights activism and advocacy, bridging the gaps created by jargon and societal insecurities. Kol-Kes is a TED Fellow, the author of …on about the same old things,  founder and Creative Director of the Queer Shorts Showcase Festival (Botswana), an alumnus of the Young African Leadership Initiative and a member of the Mellon Mays Fellows Professional Network (MMFPN). She has previously served as Curator of the Gaborone Hub of the World Economic Forum initiative- Global Shapers Community, and was a 2016/17 Chevening Scholar. More can be find in http://kkolkes.wixsite.com/kkolkes

HOW TO BOOK

All booking details and links below. All press requests and general questions please email
queertoursoflondon@gmail.com.

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NEXT EVENTS!
Wednesday 18th April 2018 – ‘Queer tour of ‘Nightlife in Soho’  6-7pm – meeting point at Soho Square, London W1D – facebook event page here
We cannot empower our queer present without understanding our queer past. On this 1 hour walking tour of Soho, come and discover some of the now-lost queer nighttime spaces, the incredible queer pioneers that ran these spaces, and the clientele that filled them. Learn about the oppressive police actions, such as undercover surveillance and raids, as well as the inspirational stories of the fight for queer liberation. Listen and learn with LGBT+ activists and listen to their own stories of advocating for LGBT+ rights in the UK and the world. Learn about the history of judicial, medical and religious persecution faced by the LGBTQI+ community and how we have creatively resisted on the streets and in the courts in London and across the world.
Suggested donation £10 – to book please email queertoursoflondon@gmail.com ASAP
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Thursday 19th April 2018 – Join us to support the ‘Stop LGBTQI+ Persection in the Commonwealth Protest’ – 1-2pm – LGBT+ human rights vigil outside the HQ of the Commonwealth Secretariat against the criminalisation of same-sex relations by 37 out the 53 Commonwealth member states. We’ll be joined by LGBT+ delegates from across the Commonwealth. This vigil is being held while the Commonwealth summit is in progress. The venue is: Marlborough House, Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5HX. Nearest tubes: Green Park, Piccadilly Circus and Charing Cross. Map: http://bit.ly/2FeqE1G – Facebook event page here

The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) will take place in the UK in April 2018. We urge the CHOGM 2018 organisers to:

  • Include lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and inter-sex (LGBTI) human rights on the main CHOGM agenda
  • Invite openly LGBTI people from the Commonwealth to address the CHOGM leaders.
Please sign the petition here and share it far and wide. Further info here ‘2018 must be the year the entire Commonwealth recognises LGBT+ Rights’
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Sunday 22nd April 7.30 – 10pm ‘Finale Unfinished Business – LGBT+ Voices of the Revolution performance showcase’ at ‘Rich Mix’ 35-47 Bethnal Green Rd, London E1 6LA – book your tickets here! – facebook page here
 

Performances from leading LGBTQI+ artists showcasing dance, spoken word, electric and acapella songs and much more including SJ Soulist (Poetry & Rap), Daniel McBride (Drag),Kat Kai Kol-Kes (Singing), Iviee Mercutio (Poetry & Rap), Bimini-Bon Boulash (Pole Dancing)
Unfinished Business – LGBTQI+ Voices of the Revolution is a showcase that brings together an inspirational line up of LGBTQI+ musicians from countries where it is illegal to be LGBTQI+ to collaborate, create and perform with each other. The night comes at the end of a Commonwealth summit – CHOGM – in London where we demand that LGBT+ freedom is at the top of the agenda. Bringing together LGBTQI+ artists from countries around the world where it is illegal to be queer we will showcase musicians and artists whose work expression is both unapologetically Queer and uncompromisingly anti-racist. Think radical and outrageous revolutionaries who struggles are multi-layered and universal: beautiful voices of global and intersectional resistance.

Tickets – £5 or £3 concession. Profits go to African Rainbow Family (www.africanrainbowfamily.org) – Venue is fully accesible.

book your tickets here to avoid disappointment –https://www.richmix.org.uk/events/music/unfinished-business-lgbt-voices-revolution-x – or just turn up!

With your host Botswana born Trans* ARTivist – Katlego Kai Kolanyane-Kesupile (Kol-Kes) 

Katlego Kai Kolanyane-Kesupile (Kol-Kes) is a groundbreaking ARTivist, she uses various art forms for human rights activism and advocacy, bridging the gaps created by jargon and societal insecurities. Kol-Kes is a TED Fellow, the author of …on about the same old things, founder and Creative Director of the Queer Shorts Showcase Festival (Botswana), an alumnus of the Young African Leadership Initiative and a member of the Mellon Mays Fellows Professional Network (MMFPN). She has previously served as Curator of the Gaborone Hub of the World Economic Forum initiative- Global Shapers Community, and was a 2016/17 Chevening Scholar. More can be find in http://kkolkes.wixsite.com/kkolkes

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April 25th 6-7pm – ‘Justice for Xulhaz Mannan and Mahbub Tonoy’ –  Bangladesh High Commission in London, 8 Queens Gate, SW7 5JA South Kensington

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WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING …

‘Human Rights is not a privilege, Commonwealth citizens who are LGBT have the right to freely express who they are without fear of persecution and or prosecution, it is important for these rights to be legally protected and understood.’ Reverend Jide Macaulay – Founder @HouseOfRainbow

‘The laws in Commonwealth states speak in languages inscribed on LGBT+ bodies as bleeding scars. The time has come for states to see these scars and for the cause of the Commonwealth to take responsibility for enabling the recovery process.’ – Kat Kai Kol-Kes, ARTivist (Botswana)

For Immediate Release – ‘Unfinished Business’ Week of protest begins to abolish all anti – LGBT+ Commonwealth Laws

For Immediate Release – ‘Unfinished Business’ Week of protest begins to abolish all anti – LGBT+ Commonwealth Laws

A coalition of high-profile UK and global LGBTQI+ rights movements are coalescing this week in a series of protests while The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM)*1 that is taking place in the UK next week to demand that they put LGBTQIA+ rights at the top of the agenda. CHOGM leaders have previously always refused to discuss or support LGBT+ issues and concerns*2.

Hosted by groundbreaking Botswana born Trans* ARTivist Katlego Kai Kolanyane-Kesupile *3 who is the first outspoken transwoman from Botswana and in association with ‘In Place of War’, ‘African Rainbow Family’, ‘African Equality Foundation’ ‘Rainbow Pilgrims’, ‘Peter Tatchell Foundation’, ‘Queer Tours of London – A Mince Through time’ and more, the week of action includes vigils, street-interventions and performances*3. The walking tours will march across London’s key embassies which maintain homophobic legislation with speeches and creative civil disobedience by activists who have fled homophobic persecution. 

In the middle of the week there will be a  vigil on Thursday 19th April 2018 entitled ‘Stop LGBTQI+ Persecution in the Commonwealth’ Protest 1-2pm outside the HQ of the Commonwealth Secretariat in London SW1Y 5HX against the criminalisation of same-sex relations by 37 out the 53 Commonwealth member states. It will be joined by LGBTQI+ delegates from across the Commonwealth. SIGN up on Facebook and SHARE: https://www.facebook.com/events/245606469317876/?active_tab=about 

The week of action demands that CHOGM 2018 organisers

  • Include lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and inter-sex (LGBTI) human rights on the main CHOGM agenda
  • Invite openly LGBTI people from the Commonwealth to address the CHOGM leaders.

Unfinished Business – LGBTQI+ Voices of the Revolution will end the week with a performance showcase that brings together an inspirational lineup of LGBTQI+ artists from the UK together with countries where it is illegal to be LGBTQI+ to celebrate and support the next generation of artists, activists and change-makers dedicated to ending homophobia, transphobia and all forms of oppression. It will provide public cultural platforms that will raise awareness outside the CHOGM conference walls agitating for a global movement of creative activism to decriminalise homosexuality everywhere and provide true freedom for all.

“Two years have been passed since Xulhaz Mannan, the publisher and co-founder of Roopban and another LGBTQ activist  were brutally murdered by religious activist in Bangladesh which is of the commonwealth countries where homosexuality is a crime and the punishment is lifetime imprisonment under the section 377 penal code. As a LGBTQ activist from Bangladesh I want justice for my friends Xulhaz Mannan and Mahbub Rabbi Tonoy and also want commonwealth leader should take necessary steps to abolish the law against homosexuality among all the commonwealth countries including Bangladesh to give us the freedom to live in our own countries as a other normal citizen” Mazharul Islam, LGBTQ activist from Bangladesh.

“The Commonwealth is a bastion of homophobia. In defiance of the human rights principles of the Commonwealth Charter, 37 out of 53 Commonwealth countries criminalise LGBT+ people. Nine have life imprisonment. In parts of two countries – Pakistan and Nigeria – there is the death penalty. Even more Commonwealth countries fail to protect LGBT+ people against discrimination and hate crime – and reject dialogue with their local LGBT+ organisations. For six decades, the leaders at Commonwealth summits have refused to discuss, let alone support, equality for the estimated more than 100 million LGBT+ citizens living in the member states.” Peter Tatchell, The Peter Tatchell Foundation

“The global landscape for LGBTQI+ refugees, migrants and travellers is a dubious one and we want to shed a light on the important stories marginalised people have to share. At Rainbow Pilgrims, we have given a voice to people who sometimes feel unheard, in order to better understand what more can be done to support the members of these diverse communities and celebrate their contribution to British society and beyond.” Surat-Shaan Knan, founder of Rainbow Pilgrims

‘Human Rights is not a privilege, Commonwealth citizens who are LGBT have the right to freely express who they are without fear of persecution and or prosecution, it is important for these rights to be legally protected and understood.’ Reverend Jide Macaulay, Founder @HouseOfRainbow

‘The laws in Commonwealth states speak in languages inscribed on LGBT+ bodies as bleeding scars. The time has come for states to see these scars and for the cause of the Commonwealth to take responsibility for enabling the recovery process.’  Kat Kai Kol-Kes, ARTivist (Botswana)

Contacts

Queertoursoflondon@gmail.com / www.queertoursoflondon.com / Tel – 0044 (0) 7717811747

Notes to Editors

*1 CHOGM – The Commonwealth is a diverse community of 53 nations that work together to promote prosperity, democracy and peace.https://www.chogm2018.org.uk/

*2 – http://www.petertatchellfoundation.org/commonwealth-summit-2018-bid-for-lgbt-rights/

*3 – Katlego Kai Kolanyane-Kesupile (Kol-Kes) is a groundbreaking ARTivist, she uses various art forms for human rights activism and advocacy, bridging the gaps created by jargon and societal insecurities. Kol-Kes is a TED Fellow, the author of …on about the same old things, founder and Creative Director of the Queer Shorts Showcase Festival (Botswana), an alumnus of the Young African Leadership Initiative and a member of the Mellon Mays Fellows Professional Network (MMFPN). She has previously served as Curator of the Gaborone Hub of the World Economic Forum initiative- Global Shapers Community, and was a 2016/17 Chevening Scholar. More can be find in http://kkolkes.wixsite.com/kkolkes

*3 – This vigil is being held while the Commonwealth summit is in progress. The venue is: Marlborough House, Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5HX. Nearest tubes: Green Park, Piccadilly Circus and Charing Cross. Map: http://bit.ly/2FeqE1G – Facebook event page here

Please sign the petition here and share it far and wide. Further info here ‘2018 must be the year the entire Commonwealth recognises LGBT+ Rights’

Further events all details here

Sunday 15th April 2018 – ‘LGBT+ Voices of the Revolution’ Tour of Central London – 1-4pm meeting point at the Indian High Commission, India House, London WC2B 4NA – outsavvy ticket link here

Wednesday 18th April 2018 – ‘Queer tour of ‘Nightlife in Soho’  5-6pm – meeting point at Soho Square, London W1D  

Sunday 22nd April 7.30 – 10pm ‘Finale Unfinished Business – LGBT+ Voices of the Revolution performance showcase’ at ‘Rich Mix’ 35-47 Bethnal Green Rd, London E1 6LA – Performances from leading LGBTQI+ artists showcasing dance, spoken word, electric and acapella songs and much more including SJ Soulist (Poetry & Rap), Daniel McBride (Drag),Kat Kai Kol-Kes (Singing), Iviee Mercutio (Poetry & Rap), Bimini-Bon Boulash (Pole Dancing) – https://www.richmix.org.uk/events/music/unfinished-business-lgbt-voices-revolution-x – or just turn up!