All posts by DLGBT+ Staff

Creative writing workshop – last call!


This is your last call for our creative writing workshop on Wednesday 28th June.  Remember to book your free place by this Friday! If you’ve ever wanted to have a go at creative writing, why not come and join us for a workshop on Wednesday 28th June 6-8pm at our centre.  A published writer will offer some fun exercises to get everyone writing, and be on hand afterwards to answer any questions that you have about getting started or improving your skills.

Where: Derbyshire LGBT+, 7 Bramble Street, Derby DE1 1HU
When Wednesday 28th June 6-8pm

Limited off-road parking is available directly opposite the centre.

Place are free, but limited, so please contact us to book your free place beforehand.  All welcome, but we ask that under 16’s are accompanied by an adult. You can contact us on info@derbyshirelgbt.org.uk or by phone on 01332 207704.  Please book your place by Friday 23rd June.

LGBT+ History: Mark Rees

Mark Rees, Transman

In 1987, Mark Rees, a trans-man, brought a case to the European Court of Human Rights, stating that UK law prevented him from gaining legal status recognising him as male. The case was lost but the court noted the seriousness of the issues facing trans people.  His campaigning work eventually led to the formation of Press for Change, an organisation seeking rights and equality for all Trans* people in the UK.

You can read the full case notes here: http://www.pfc.org.uk/caselaw/Rees%20vs%20The%20United%20Kingdom.pdf.  He did a podcast where he talks about his life here and you can read an article about him taking the case to court here although the first part gives more of an insight into his early life.

His story revolves around the church refusing him ordination as his baptism certificate stated he was female which the church disallowed ordination to.  This prompted him to launch a legal challenge as one had previously been heard by the European Court of Human Rights on the same issue.  Although the case was denied the courts admitted that their was a case to be had.  This was one of the catalysts to later lead to the implementation of the Gender Recognition Act.

Creative Writing Workshop 28th June – places still available!

Don’t forget places on our creative writing workshop are still available! If you’ve ever wanted to have a go at creative writing, why not come and join us for a workshop on Wednesday 28th June 6-8pm at our centre.  A published writer will offer some fun exercises to get everyone writing, and be on hand afterwards to answer any questions that you have about getting started or improving your skills.

Where: Derbyshire LGBT+, 7 Bramble Street, Derby DE1 1HU
When Wednesday 28th June 6-8pm

Limited off-road parking is available directly opposite the centre.

Place are free, but limited, so please contact us to book your free place beforehand.  All welcome, but we ask that under 16’s are accompanied by an adult. You can contact us on info@derbyshirelgbt.org.uk or by phone on 01332 207704.  Please book your place by Friday 23rd June.

LGBT+ History: Supporting the miners

1986: Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners (LGSM) campaign is launched in support of striking workers during the miners’ strikes of 1984 and 1985.  These events were recreated in the film PRIDE (2014)

The LGSM group did not cease to have a purpose after the strike ended as to an extent is still going albeit as a Facebook group(link) and with just seven of the original members left.  It is important to not forget that the miners groups themselves were also playing a major part and with the reforming of the Neath, Dulais and Swansea Valley Miners’ Support Group (1) both groups have been very close in supporting each other 30 years on.

The LGSM sister group, Lesbians Against Pit Closures, did not reform but is instead honoured as still being a part of the LGSM history according to the LGSM website.

LGBT+ History: Chris Smith

Maureen Colquhoun (left), Chris Smith (right)

In 1984 Chris Smith, Labour MP for Islington South and Finsbury, speaks about his sexual orientation and becomes the first openly gay MP.  His announcement at a rally in Rugby was met by a standing ovation.

He was not, the first MP to out themselves as 10 years earlier Maureen Colquhoun came out as the first lesbian MP.  She was notorious for being very outspoken, and as a result of her “obsession with women’s rights” was deselected losing her seat in 1979.

LGBT+ History: events of 1982 into 1983

1982 Following laws in England, Wales and Scotland.  The Homosexual Offences Order decriminalises sex between two men over the age of 21 ‘in private’ in Northern Ireland.


 

Terry Higgins died of AIDS in St. Thomas’ Hospital, one of the first people to be identified as having AIDS in the UK, which had only been formerly identified as a disease the previous year.  His bereaved friends and partner set up the Terry Higgins Trust (which changed name to the Terrence Higgins Trust to sound more formal), which became the UK’s first charity focussing on AIDS, HIV and safer sex.

1983 Amid the hysteria of the AIDS crisis the CDC highlighted which groups were affected, including Men who have sex with men, amongst others, and resulted in being persecuted as fear of the disease spreads.  The following extract from a New York government report sums up the reactions of the time.

1983 By January 7, 1983, all of the major routes of transmission had been identified and reported by the CDC.1-5, 8-11 Transfusion-associated infections, and infections among children, led to heightened public concern. As the epidemic advanced, fear, ignorance, prejudice, homophobia, cultural stereotypes and racism were pervasive and stigmatized not only those who were infected
but also those who were believed to be infected, most specifically members of groups identified by the CDC as being at highest risk: homosexual men, Haitians, intravenous drug users and
hemophiliacs. Among the consequences were: social isolation; discrimination; loss of employment; prohibitions against blood donation; denial of medical care; and lack of access to services.

Creative Writing Workshop – 28th June

Good folks, if you’ve ever wanted to have a go at creative writing, why not come and join us for a workshop on Wednesday 28th June 6-8pm at our centre.  A published writer will offer some fun exercises to get everyone writing, and be on hand afterwards to answer any questions that you have about getting started or improving your skills.

Where: Derbyshire LGBT+, 7 Bramble Street, Derby DE1 1HU
When Wednesday 28th June 6-8pm

Limited off-road parking is available directly opposite the centre.

Place are free, but limited, so please contact us to book your free place beforehand.  All welcome, but we ask that under 16’s are accompanied by an adult. You can contact us on info@derbyshirelgbt.org.uk or by phone on 01332 207704.  Please book your place by Friday 23rd June.

LGBT+ History: Scotland’s decriminalisation/ first UK AIDS case

1980 Sex between two men over the age of 21 ‘in private’ is decriminalised in Scotland.  Homosexual activities were legalised in Scotland  — on the same basis as that which was used for the 1967 Act in England and Wales — by Section 80 of the Criminal Justice Scotland Act 1980.

80 Homosexual offences

—(i) Subject to the provisions of this section, a homosexual act in private shall not be an offence provided that the parties consent thereto and have attained the age of twenty-one years.

(2)An act which would otherwise be treated for the purposes of this Act as being done in private shall not be so treated if done—

(a)when more than two persons take part or are present or

(b)in a lavatory to which the public have, or are permitted to have, access whether on payment or otherwise

1981 The first UK case of AIDS was recorded when a 49-year-old man was admitted to Brompton Hospital in London suffering from PCP (Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia). He died ten days later. He had lost weight over three months and suffered three weeks’ general malaise and progressive breathlessness.

The first concerns were raised in the US as described in the following extract from a CDC report;

A review of requests for pentamidine had documented that PCP in the United States was almost exclusively limited to patients with cancer or other conditions or treatments known to be associated with severe immunosuppression (3). Recent requests for this drug from physicians in New York and California to treat PCP in patients with no known cause of immunodeficiency had sparked the attention of Division staff.

An article from 1981 speculates about the causes of what would become the AIDS epidemic.

“Dr Jaffe,[said] the epidemic may be due to a new and previously unrecognised strain of an infectious agent – possibly comparable with Legionnaires’ disease. This agent may or may not be a virus. He added: “We have no evidence at the moment that it is transmitted from person to person, but this is something we are concerned about.” In recent months, British specialists have become increasingly interested in US developments, and current speculation in medical circles is about when, rather than whether, further PCP and the first KS cases will turn up here. “We have to be careful not to be alarmist,” a London doctor closely involved said last week. “The numbers we are talking about are very small. But I think this problem is going to become a large one.”

http://briandeer.com/aids-1981-uk.htm

Training session for volunteers interested in delving into LGBT+ history!

As part of Derbyshire LGBT’s history project “Other Stories”, we’ll be joining forces with Record Office in Matlock on 27 May to discover what resources and materials they have available that can help us uncover stories from LGBT+ history. Staff from the record office will talk attendees through the materials available and how they can be accessed, with a particular focus on LGBT+ relevant sources. Those attending will also be able to view the display on LGBT history on show at the Record Office until the end of the month. Full details:

Saturday 27 May, 10am-1pm – Derbyshire Record Office, New Street, Matlock DE4 3FE. Limited parking is available on site and there are a number of blue-badge spaces in the car park adjacent to the record office.

Attendees will be asked to sign-up as project volunteers before attending and will have the opportunity to learn skills that can help our project find more previously hidden stories from our community’s past.

Email heritage@derbyshirelgbt.org.uk for more details and to sign-up.

 We will be announcing further training sessions like these throughout the project and in other locations around the county. This will include training on recording oral history interviews, so even if you can’t make these events, please get in touch by emailing heritage@derbyshirelgbt.org.uk if you’re interested in attending in future. Find out more about the history project by following the project on social media @LGBT_heritage / facebook.com/lgbtheritage or looking at our blog otherstorieslgbt.wordpress.com:

 

LGBT+ History: The Gay Christian Movement

The Gay Christian Movement was founded in April 1976 at a public meeting at the Sir John Cass School in the City of London, and later changed its name to the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement.

In 1976 the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement was founded at St Botolph’s and through the 1980s and 1990s St Botolph’s was a safe space for those who had been excluded from other churches because of their sexuality. Fortunately in the last decade other churches have become much more welcoming to LGBT people. The church continues to be a place where LGBT are welcomed as an integral part of our community. (source)

Needing a new home they moved to Oxford house, a Settlement project in Bethnal Green. After staying there for 25 years, they decided to leave London and relocated to a new home in Nottinghamshire.

Now the Movement includes LGBT+ and allies amongst its members, and also welcomes those of different faiths, or none, to work towards shared goals.