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February 5, 2014

David Silvester was kicked out of the UK Independence Party. Now he wants gays to ‘repent’ and has bizarrely voted for a town council motion against him

Local councilor David Silvester who said floods across Britain were caused by same-sex marriage equality has called on gays ‘to repent’ at a council meeting.

Silvester remains part of Henley Town Council, a prosperous town in southern England and home to the world-famous rowing regatta, despite being kicked out of the UK Independence Party because of his comments.

January 20, 2014

UKIP leader calls the Conservative defector to his party an 'embarrassment' after the widespread coverage of his remarks blaming recent storms on gay marriage

UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage has called the recent media storm after one of the party’s councilors blamed floods on gay marriage to be ‘not news’.

He said it proved the media and the main political parties were ‘scared witless’ of the far-right political party.

Councillor David Silvester had said last week Britain was ‘beset by storms’ after David Cameron acted ‘arrogantly against the gospel’.

He was suspended from UKIP following his comments.

August 8, 2012

Simon Walsh and Michael Peacock were both cleared of gay porn charges in UK courts, but why did the police and prosecutors take it that far in the first place?

Is the English legal establishment institutionally homophobic? That may seem an odd question, given the wealth of LGBT-positive initiatives put in place by police forces in recent years. But two recent prosecutions around gay pornography – of Michael Peacock in January for distributing it and of Simon Walsh for possessing it – are leading many in the non-straight community to raise an eyebrow.

July 30, 2012

Labour politician Angela Eagle to lead pride march through her home city in north of England

Angela Eagle, Britain’s first out lesbian Member of Parliament, has become the first ever patron of Liverpool pride.

She said she is 'proud' to be given the honor and to lead the LGBT parade through the center of the English city.

'Liverpool Pride does so much to celebrate the diversity in communities across Merseyside,' Eagle said.

'It also works to tear down barriers, stand up for rights and insist on equality for LGBT people.

July 25, 2012

UK Prime Minister David Cameron tells special guests at Downing Street, including Russell Tovey and Ben Cohen, that church risks turning off faithful with anti-gay stance

UK Prime Minister David Cameron has told an LGBT Downing Street reception that the churches are on the wrong side of the argument on gay marriage.

The reception yesterday evening (24 July), the hottest day of the British summer so far, was held in the garden of Number 10 Downing Street.

July 25, 2012

New legislation may give the late Alan Turing, the mathematician which helped the Allies win World War II, a pardon for his gay sex conviction

Alan Turning, the father of computing and World War II hero, may be pardoned for his 1952 conviction for having sex with another man thanks to Britain’s House of Lords.

Turing helped crack the Enigma code, helping the Allies understand German communications and ultimately win the Second World War.

But in 1952 he was convicted for ‘gross indecency’ with another man by a British court and accepted treatment with female hormones – also known as chemical castration – as an alternative to prison.

July 25, 2012

Scotland will be first part of UK to legalize same-sex marriage. UPDATE: Full reactions from LGBT campaigners, faith leaders and politicians

Scotland has confirmed it will legalize gay marriage, becoming the first part of the UK to do so.

A bill on the issue will be brought forward in the country's parliament this September.

Today’s decision (25 July) comes after cabinet members of the Scottish National Party (SNP) government met earlier this month to discuss the measures.

Despite widespread support for a change in the law, there has been fierce opposition from some religious leaders and clerics.

July 17, 2012

Ministers in Scotland's cabinet are expected to begin discussing legalizing same-sex marriage today ahead of announcing legislation

Scottish ministers are expected to discuss legalizing same-sex marriage in the country when the cabinet meets today (17 July).

Pro-gay marriage ministers from the Scottish National Party will announce legislation following the results of a consultation this week, with a finalized bill likely to appear by 2013.

Unlike England and Wales’ proposals, it is planned Scottish churches will be able to bless gay unions but would be free to opt-out.

July 13, 2012

Britain’s lesbian poet laureate wins prize in memory of Harold Pinter

Britain’s lesbian poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy has won the 2012 Pen Pinter prize. The annual prize is awarded to any British writer or writer living in Britain of ‘outstanding literary merit’.

Awarded since 2009, the prize was set up in memory of playwright Harold Pinter who said in his Nobel prize speech that good writing should cast an ‘unflinching, unswerving’ gaze on the world and show ‘fierce intellectual determination… to define the real truth of our lives and our societies’.

July 13, 2012

As we celebrate lesbian suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst’s 145th birthday, Debbie Gold reflects how the fight for Votes for Women in the UK reflects modern LGBT struggles

The suffragettes are often cited as an inspiration in campaigns for civil rights everywhere. Just a month or so ago Julian Clary compared the struggle for gay marriage to the suffragette campaign for Votes for Women in Britain. This weekend, as we commemorate Emmeline Pankhurst’s birthday, it’s worth reflecting on some of the lessons that we can learn from the suffragettes in our movement for LGBT civil rights.

July 11, 2012

Gay Star News interviews Britain’s deputy prime minister and finds out why he’s confident religions who want to marry gay couples will be allowed to do so

As leader of the Liberal Democrats, Nick Clegg is well versed in Britain’s LGBT political agenda.

And, while it’s clear that he hasn’t always found sharing a coalition government with the Conservatives comfortable, Deputy Prime Minister Clegg does seem determined to make the most of his position whenever he can.

Luckily, one priority – and a place where he shares common ground with Prime Minister David Cameron – is on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality.

July 9, 2012

Leading campaigner Shami Chakrabarti says focusing on human rights would give British Commonwealth ‘a point’

The British Commonwealth needs new meaning and should push human rights, including for LGBT people, to give it ‘a point’.

That’s the message from Shami Chakrabarti, the director of leading UK human rights pressure group, Liberty.

She was speaking at the official London launch of Google’s Legalise Love campaign this morning (9 July).

July 7, 2012

British Prime Minister's office has released a statement supporting World Pride in London

British Prime Minister David Cameron has released a statement supporting World Pride in London today (7 July).

July 7, 2012

UK’s Deputy Prime Minister Clegg wants same-sex couples who wish to marry in church to be allowed to

British Deputy Prime Minster Nick Clegg has told lesbian and gay teenagers they should have the right to marry in church.

The Liberal Democrat leader made the comment at a brunch for LGBT youths ahead of World Pride in London today (7 July).

The event was hosted by Stonewall, Britain’s leading lesbian, gay and bisexual campaigning organization.

The Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government consulted the public over the last few months on introducing same-sex marriage in England and Wales.

July 7, 2012

A film about pride in Latvia, and the state of World Pride in London, both lead Linda Wilkinson to conclude that the visibility such events brings is vital

Uber butch dyke and performer Lea Delaria hosted a panel discussion on Friday (6 July) at Amnesty’s Human Rights Centre in Shoreditch, east London, around a film about the history of LGBT prides in Latvia.

At 90 minutes long, the film pulled no punches. We heard opinions from every quarter, from the hilariously religious mother figure who carried a cross and lay down in an attempt to stop the marches; to the frankly terrifying right wing fascists. Interested and engaged queers were counterbalanced by those who simply wanted to hide in their corner.

July 6, 2012

Extreme jihadist anti gay hate preachers invited to speak in a conference this Sunday. Some speakers openly call for gays to be put to death

This Sunday (8 July), London will host a conference titled The Month of Mercy featuring several extreme jihadist hate preachers, some of which have previously used hate speech against gays even calling for the death penalty for this 'sin'.

The conference is organised by The Al-Muntada Al-Islami, meaning the Islamic Forum in Arabic. This Salafi trust owns a Mosque and a number of schools in Britain, it also runs an Islamic centre in Parsons Green, London SW6, which has a long history of hosting known homophobic hate preachers.

July 6, 2012

Welsh artist shows his admiration for President Obama with a very colorful tribute

A gay Welsh artist has revealed his latest work – a rainbow style tribute to US President Barack Obama following his support for marriage equality.

Nathan Wyburn, who shot to fame in Britain’s Got Talent for his toast artwork, created the presidential tribute.

It is one of the homages to Obama from gay artists since he became the first sitting US president in history to support marriage equality.

Just at the end of last month, New York artist Tom Vasquez released a rainbow fractal image of Obama which ended up going viral.

July 6, 2012

Welsh artist shows his admiration for President Obama with a very colorful tribute

A gay Welsh artist has revealed his latest work – a rainbow style tribute to US President Barack Obama following his support for marriage equality.

Nathan Wyburn, who shot to fame in Britain’s Got Talent for his toast artwork, created the presidential tribute.

It is one of the homages to Obama from gay artists since he became the first sitting US president in history to support marriage equality.

Just at the end of last month, New York artist Tom Vasquez released a rainbow fractal image of Obama which ended up going viral.

July 3, 2012

Does the BBC really stand for Believers Broadcasting Christianity? Garry Otton says it does as ‘Auntie’ gets ready for her 90th birthday

After a court ruled that local councillors in Britain weren’t entitled to pray at taxpayers’ expense, our UK state broadcaster, the BBC interrupted the news on BBC Radio 4 to have turbaned Sikh, Lord Singh, accuse the National Secular Society (NSS), who brought the case against the councillors, of losing the spirit of ‘live and let live’.

July 2, 2012

Stonewall launches guide in six languages to tell lesbian, gay and bisexual visitors to Britain their rights

Britain’s leading gay campaign organization, Stonewall, is giving its own welcome to visitors to the country.

You’re Welcome is a new guide for lesbian, gay and bisexual tourists and available in English, French, Spanish, German, Italian and Polish.

It will be distributed to every Tourist Information Office, Citizens Advice Bureau and police force in England, as well as many bars and clubs.

More than 1.5 million lesbian, gay and bisexual people visit Britain every year, contributing £1billion ($1.6billion €1.2billion) to the economy.

June 26, 2012

The festival celebrating LGBT pride in the Black, African, Asian, Caribbean and Middle Eastern communities returns to London for its seventh year

UK Black Pride, the festival celebrating LGBT pride in Britain’s multicultural communities is back.

The party is set to take place on 18 August at Kennington Park in south London.

Tickets for the festival are now on sale from Ticket Line and for a limited time only, the website is offering four tickets for the price of three. Prices are at £10 plus £1 booking fee.

June 20, 2012

LGBT campaign group SchoolsOUT calls for UK schools to better equip teachers to tackle homophobic bullying following Ofsted report

Campaigners are calling for UK schools to do more to tackle homophobic bullying following a report which found many staff are not sufficiently trained to deal with the problem.

Ofsted’s No Place For Bullying report, published yesterday (19 June), revealed that most anti-bullying training in schools was too general and failed to focus on specifics, leading to many teachers feeling ill-equipped to tackle incidents of homophobia.

Inspectors from Britain’s education watchdog also found that casual use of anti-gay language was common in many of the schools visited.

June 18, 2012

Homophobic bullying is a 'significant' problem worldwide, according to new report by UN agency

A new report by UNESCO has revealed the extent of homophobic bullying worldwide, recognizing the problem as a human rights issue.

The UN agency’s first ever international consultation on the issue brought together experts from NGOs, ministries of education and academia from more than 25 countries around the world.

The report states that, based on evidence collected, the scale of the problem is ‘significant’ and as a result students around the world are routinely denied the ‘basic, universal human right to education’.

June 12, 2012

YouGov survey for Stonewall flies in the face of Church of England warnings about impact of gay marriage

Despite condemnation by the Church of England today (12 June), a new poll has revealed more than half of religious people in Britain support gay marriage.

The findings by LGBT rights group Stonewall show three in five people of faith support the UK government's plans to legalize gay marriage in England and Wales, with 71% of Britons saying they back legislation to extend civil marriage to same-sex couples.