Thursday, July 24, 2008

Gay Liberation Front at Goldsmiths, 1974

The Gay Liberation Front was a radical movement founded in 1970 who, among other things, started Gay Pride and organised the first open, publically advertised gay dance nights in London. In February 1974, one of the groups involved - 'the drag queens of the Bethnal Rouge Bookshop Collective' - caused a commotion in New Cross.

According to Stuart Feather's account, they 'appeared by invitation at Goldsmith College Gay Soc to give a Pre-Disco talk. They were dressed for the occasion in their best Disco Diva Drag. Whilst enjoying a pre-talk drink they were attacked by Group 4 Total Security and badly beaten up whilst Lewisham police were called and told by the same security guards that Bethnal Rouge had come to the disco to cause trouble. One queen needed hospital treatment; another who was head butted lost two front teeth. One was arrested and later that night thrown through a glass door in the police station. The rest escaped'.

No comments: