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January 21, 2015

'I'm under strict instructions to take my boyfriend!' says winner Eamonn Clarke

Gay Star News reader Eamonn Clarke is the winner of the Gay Star Travel Expo grand prize, we can reveal.

Eamonn and his partner will be heading to Vienna in May for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the Eurovision Song Contest Final, after Gay Star News teamed up with Visit Vienna and Austrian Airlines for the giveaway.

In order to enter the competition, attendees had to 'pin the beard on Conchita' [see right].

Vienna

January 20, 2015

'The guys on Modern Family are a stereotype but it works for that show – it doesn’t mean that every show has to have that'

John Barrowman finally felt like he was not alone.

As he sat on a stage last week with the casts of the superhero TV series Arrow and The Flash, he was one of several openly gay men in a group that also included Wentworth Miller, Victor Garber and creator-producer Greg Berlanti.

'What’s lovely is they blind cast – they don’t care,' Barrowman said during a chat with Gay Star News after the TV Critics Association panel.

January 19, 2015

Gay activists fear it willl give governments an excuse to censor LGBTI themes or characters

Russia will ban films that 'defile its culture' or 'threatens national unity'.

The government has proposed that films 'defiling the national culture, posing a threat to national unity and undermining the foundations of the constitutional order' will not be given public screenings.

While intended to be enforced on 1 January, they are currently undergoing a review process.

January 19, 2015

Queer travel event featured packed political debates and killer performances from La Voix and London Gay Big Band

The Gay Star Travel Expo returned to London's Heaven nightclub for the second time last Saturday – and the one-stop-travel-shop proved a huge success, with LGBTI travellers filling the venue throughout the day.

The event featured two packed afternoon debates, the first featuring political figures Lord Cashman, Baroness Barker and Crispin Blunt.

January 17, 2015

Missed the debate at the Gay Star Travel Expo? Find out what the biggest gay political names in the UK said about huge issues

The UK’s first big political debate of 2015 was on gay rights as the three big parties faced off during the Gay Star Travel Expo today (17 January).

Labour’s Lord Michael Cashman, Liberal Democrat’s Baroness Liz Barker and Conservative’s Crispin Blunt MP answered a variety of questions from the engaged and curious British public.

It was chaired by Gay Star News editor Tris Reid-Smith.

They were asked, in overview, what is Britain’s role in global LGBTI rights.

January 16, 2015

Labour, Lib Dem and Conservative politicians will face off on the issue of Britain's role in global gay rights on Saturday

The UK will have its first big political debate of 2015 at the Gay Star Travel Expo tomorrow (17 January), just a few months before May's General Election.

Labour's Lord Cashman, Liberal Democrat's Baroness Barker and Conservative's Crispin Blunt MP will face off on the topic of Britain's role in global LGBTI rights.

The politicians will also be there at Heaven in Charing Cross, central London, at 12pm to answer questions from the public.

January 15, 2015

  One-stop travel shop returns to London's Heaven nightclub this Saturday (Jan 17)

The Gay Star Travel Expo returns to London's Heaven nightclub next week, on January 17 – and these are just some of the experts, organisations and friends of Gay Star News who will be on hand to make the event a day to remember...

Atlantic Pride – the gay cruise line specialists will be offering GSN readers a special discount on their 2016 cruise from the Caribbean to the Canaries.

January 14, 2015

A referendum for equal marriage rights will be held in May this year

Ireland gay groups have warned that while polls are positive the country will soon get same-sex marriage, they could be deceptive.

Recent surveys have shown a majority of Irish citizens in every age group, in every region of the country, across every social class and across every political party believe gay and lesbian couples should be able to get married.

In May this year, there will be a referendum allowing people to vote for equal marriage rights.

January 13, 2015

One-stop travel shop takes place at London's Heaven nightclub this Saturday (17 Jan)

The Gay Star Travel Expo returns to London's Heaven nightclub this Saturday (17 January) – and just some of the special guests at this one-stop travel shop are the iON cameras team.

iON's sophisticated designs, paired with their hard-wearing, waterproof durability make them a favourite with travellers and sportspeople alike.

Perfect, then, for filming an all-action skiing or mountain biking holiday. They're also more likely to survive being lugged around in your suitcase!

January 12, 2015

Gay rights activist: 'This would be a disaster, a government-mandated torture chamber for children.'

An Indian state is planning on setting up 'rehabs' for LGBTI youth to be 'cured'.

Ramesh Tawadkar, Goa's Sports and Youth Affairs Minister, said gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex teenagers need to be 'helped' – like young people who have committed crimes or are addicted to drugs.

Speaking to reporters at the launch of the Goa State Youth Policy 2015, he reportedly said: 'We will make them normal. We will have a center for them. Like Alcholic Anonymous centers.'

January 11, 2015

Charlton Rainbows, an LGBTI supporters group of Charlton Athletic, tweeted their shock at some members being attacked after meeting a hoax group

An LGBTI football supporters group was invited to meet a group similar to theirs, only to find it was a hoax and their members were attacked.

Charlton Rainbows describe themselves as ‘a Charlton Athletic supporters group made up of Bi, Gay, Lesbian and Trans Gender fans who are standing up to homophobia’, who are based in South East London.

Earlier today (11 January), the group tweeted about the attack which happened the day before.

January 9, 2015

One-stop travel shop returns to London's Heaven nightclub on 17 Jan

Andy Bell has personally designed an exclusive tote bag for Gay Star News – and it will be available at the Gay Star Travel Expo at London's Heaven nightclub next weekend, on January 17.

Following on from the success of the GSN tote bags designed by Jean Paul Gaultier last year, Andy is just one of the huge names we're teaming up with for the same project this year.

January 9, 2015

GSN's one-stop travel shop takes place at London's Heaven nightclub on Jan 17

The Gay Star Travel Expo returns to London's Heaven nightclub next week, on January 17 – and just one of the special guests at this one-stop travel shop will be the fabulous Sun Resorts.

One of the premiere Mauritian hotel groups, Sun Resorts owns six opulent hotel complexes on the paradise isle: Le Touessrok, Long Beach, Sugar Beach, La Pirogue, Ambre - All Inclusive Resort and Kanuhura.

January 8, 2015

GSN's one-stop travel shop takes place at London's Heaven nightclub on Jan 17

The Gay Star Travel Expo returns to London's Heaven nightclub next week, on January 17 – and just one of the special guests at this one-stop travel shop will be the fabulous City Cruises.

Offering sightseeing London river cruises and boat tours from Westminster, Tower and Greenwich Piers, the organisation offers the perfect backdrop for a memorable party or a romantic date.

January 7, 2015

There's no need for love potions with this couple

A magical gay couple have just got engaged at Hogwarts in Universal Orlando, Florida.

Nicholas, 25, and Ben, 22, are a young couple who have been together for five years as of this past December.

It was really important to Nicholas that he propose in a place that felt special for them.

'I had planned the proposal since April, so about eight months,' he told Gay Star News.

'We are both HUGE Harry Potter fans and this would be the first year that he came down to Florida with my family.'

January 6, 2015

Rise like a phoenix for GSN's travel event – taking place at London's Heaven nightclub on 17 Jan

The Gay Star Travel Expo returns to London's Heaven nightclub on January 17 – and one of the special guests at this one stop travel shop will be the tourist board of Vienna.

The Austrian capital – which is also the host of this year's Eurovision Song Contest, following Conchita Wurst's triumphant win at last year's show in Copenhagen – will be just one of the exhibitors at the expo.

January 4, 2015

Haters blocking trans helplines and urging Nazi-style mass murder

Facebook appear to have today taken down a ‘community’ set up for the express purpose of mocking Leelah Alcorn and urging trans people to kill themselves.

However, this did not happen until after Gay Star News made senior managers aware of its existence, as over the last 24 hours, Facebook moderators have persistently claimed the page was entirely acceptable to Facebook’s community standards.

January 2, 2015

Transgender teen posted two heartbreaking notes on account before commiting suicide

The erasure of every trace of Leelah Alcorn's short life online continued today with the apparent removal, from Tumblr, of her 'satan's wifey' account.

It was from here, earlier this week, that the Ohio teen posted two notes shortly before her death, claiming that her parents' refusal to accept that she was transgender made it impossible for her to continue to live. 

January 1, 2015

Matt Bomer, Laverne Cox, Raven-Symonè and Adam Lambert among those sharing messages on social media

Ellen DeGeneres has kicked off the new year by taking to Twitter and making a bold prediction: 'Happy 2015! If 2014 was the year of the selfie, 2015 is gonna be the year of baby goats on Instagram. I’m calling it early.'

DeGeneres, who caused Twitter to crash on Oscar night with her all-star selfie, was among the LGBTI celebrities who posted messages on social media on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.

Here is a sampling compiled by Gay Star News:

December 31, 2014

A cheap flight. A low-key celebration. A new year begins

Gay Star News's Gareth Johnson wraps up his festive Australian adventure (read part one here); a kiss goodbye to his hometown of Echuca, Melbourne and a New Year's hello to London.

December 30, 2014

War hero blasts her co-author and publisher in scathing Facebook post

Trans former Navy SEAL Kristin Beck survived wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Bosnia but wanted to end it all because of the book she co-wrote about her harrowing story.

December 25, 2014

Looming new threat for Uganda’s LGBTIs

A new anti-gay bill will be top of the agenda in Uganda’s churches this Christmas as politicians return home to celebrate the holidays.

But it won’t just be a time for friends and families for members of the Ugandan parliament. They will also be starting an election campaign.

The party primaries to choose the next leader of Uganda are early next year and campaigning is already under way even though the final vote is not until 2016.

December 22, 2014

From love letters in the sky to cheeky digs at Putin - this was 2014

It was a year of up's and down's, just like every year - but moments like these ones (which topped our best read story polls - thanks everyone!) showed us hope, gave us a laugh, brought unity and strength and made us come together throughout the year.

Highlights include the great Clare Balding throwing shade at Putin to a mother coming out to her son, while he is coming out to her!

With great stories like these we're looking forward to a flourishing 2015 - so, what's next?

December 19, 2014

A 23-year-old woman no longer 'fears death' after being given reprieve from deportation

A Ugandan lesbian who was tortured to 'cure' her will not be deported from the UK - for now.

Judith Twikirize, 23, is walking free after a sudden decision to release her from Yarl's Wood detention centre last night (18 December).

While she has not been granted asylum, the UK government has agreed to look at new evidence before they make their next decision.

Twikirize has told GSN she feels like the 'fear of death' is no longer on her back.