Leicester’s Untold Stories

BCN 112 cover

This originally appeared in BCN issue 112, April 2012

The last week of February saw the launch of Untold Stories – the LGBT History Project for Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund at Leicester LGBT Centre.

The project tried from the start to be inclusive of bisexuals and continues to be open to us. I have been recorded at a friendly chat about my life so far as a bisexual man. Some of this may be heard at www.leicesterlgbtcentre.org. I’ve been the only bisexual recorded for the project so far. This seems wrong as I’m not all that old and I don’t want to be the only bi voice in our local history. Do you know of anyone who has identified as bisexual and been connected with Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland? If so, please put them in touch with the history project at Leicester LGBT Centre.

The launch was opened by an address by Leicester City elected Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby. Events included reminiscing over food from around the world with members and supporters of the local BME (Black and Minority Ethnic) LGBT community, a lecture by Professor Richard Sandell from the University of Leicester on ‘LGBT culture and its representation in the public sphere’, local ‘Meterosexual celebration of verse’ Pinggg_k! and a closing event with music from Leicestershire Rainbow Voices and a speech by Councillor David Parsons, leader of Leicester County Council.

I’d been to see the travelling display at the Central Library and took part in a group chatting there about the books and poems we found touched us. They didn’t have to be explicitly LGBT themed: one of my recollections was of the books of the TV series ‘The Tomorrow People’ which had a strong thread of being invisibly different and trying to find others or even discovering that they existed. I also appeared on a panel of four as the ‘B’ member and talked about how life had been each decade from 1960’s to now. For earlier decades I spoke of people I’d met who had been around then and how their work and bravery had made my current ‘out’ life possible.

About the time of the first UK event that later became BiCon I hear there was another event: a discussion on bisexuality held in a Leicester nightclub. Anyone know more about that?

Pictures at www.leicesterlgbtcentre.org