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Opening of UK’s first-ever LGBTQ+ museum is the ‘start of something beautiful’

London.The UK’s first Pride March, in 1972, took place just a few miles away between Hyde Park and Trafalgar Square.The march is depicted among the photographs within the Queer Britain museum, along with other key moments spanning the UK’s LGBTQ+ history.The museum’s contents are tightly interwoven with its staff.Front of House manager Stephanie Stevens initially joined Queer Britain as a volunteer, desperate to get ‘involved in any way’.She told Metro.co.uk: ‘As a trans woman, queer identifying, this was so important to me, I wanted to get involved in any way.‘Having an entire space dedicated to LGBTQ+ history is just amazing.‘It’s so normal to have to be grateful to be in the background of some other space, hidden away in a back room.‘To have our own museum is long overdue, it’s something we’ve needed for a long time.‘We’re slap-bang in the middle of London, standing shoulder to shoulder with huge institutions.’The aptly named ‘Welcome to Queer Britain’ display is the inagural exhibition for the museum.Lasting until July and spread over several rooms, it features key images from throughout the history of UK’s battle for LGBTQ+ rights.Rickshaw rider charged £180 for three minutes - and now he's got a £1,000 fineWhat I Rent: Oriana, £2,000 a month for a one-bedroom flat in Canning Town, LondonChef sacked for not washing hands after being caught 'kissing and fondling' waiterSection 28, the law which prohibited the ‘promotion of homosexuality’ by councils, introduced by the Thatcher Government in 1988, is featured.However images of more joyful occasions, such as the legalisation of equal marriage in England, Wales and Scotland – and later Northern Ireland – are also depicted.The exhibit also features key figures such as
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Veterans from UK’s first Pride to mark 50th anniversary of ‘revolutionary’ event
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First openly trans MP accuses government of ‘breaking promise’ to LGBT people
ban on conversion therapy.Jamie Wallis, Conservative MP for Bridgend, came out in defence of trans rights this week, accusing Boris Johnson of ‘breaking his promise’ to LGBT+ people.The Welsh Backbencher was praised for his bravery last week after he revealed he is trans in a highly personal statement on Twitter. Following theTory U-turn on the conversion therapy ban, he said it is ‘wrong to exclude protections for a whole group of people’ from an ‘abhorrent’ practice.‘I hope the announcement that a separate piece of work will now be done on this issue will be done at speed,’ Mr Wallis added.‘If the CT (conversion therapy) ban passes through Parliament without any protections for the transgender community, it cannot be described as anything other than a broken promise.’His comments come as more than 100 charities, including Stonewall, plan to boycott the government’s first global LGBT+ conference over its stance on conversion therapy.It is now unclear if the ‘Safe To Be Me: Global Equality Conference’ in London will go ahead after the LGBT+ and HIV charities, along with major sponsors, pulled out just three months before the event.A government spokesperson said it was ‘disappointing’ to see partners quit the conference, which was set to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the first ever London Pride march.They added officials are still ‘considering how to proceed’.In a statement on Twitter yesterday, Stonewall said it will only participate if the prime minister reverts to his promise for a trans-inclusive ban on conversion therapy.‘This is a decision we take with a heavy heart,’ it said.
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The UK’s first national LGBTQ museum will open in 2022
LGBTQ+ museum is due to open in London in spring 2022.The museum, created by the charity Queer Britain, will be located in Kings Cross in north London, in part of a building owned by Art Fund, the national charity for art.It will be a ‘fully inclusive space that celebrates the stories, people and places that are so intrinsic to the queer community in the UK’, the charity declared.Queer Britain, established in 2018, plans for the museum to allow visitors to explore and learn about the past, present and future stories of the LGBTQ+ community.The director and co-founder of Queer Britain, Joseph Galliano, said: ‘It’s time the UK had an LGBTQ+ museum for all, and we are delighted to have found our first home in beautiful Granary Square, with Art Fund as our first landlord.‘It’s a prime location accessible to swathes of the country, and in a part of town with a rich queer heritage.’The new museum will include four galleries, a workshop, an education space, a gift shop, and offices for the Queer Britain team.The space will be fully accessible with lifts and ramps and will be free to enter, with donations welcome to support its work.Queer Britain’s archive is currently housed at the Bishopsgate Institute and is accessible by appointment to the public and researchers.A trustee of Queer Britain, Lisa Power, shared: ‘I’m really excited that Queer Britain is finally going to have a space to show what we can do and that we’re here for all the community, from old lesbian feminist warhorses like me to young queer folk of all genders and ethnicities.‘Queer Britain aims to tell our many and diverse histories, and now we have a home to do that from.’The director of Art Fund, Jenny Waldman, said the charity was ‘delighted’ to welcome Queer
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