Unveiling Event

Last Friday the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum and Studio Voltaire unveiled London’s 2nd Rainbow Plaque dedicated to the film, My Beautiful Laundrette. 

The plaque has been installed opposite at 11 Wilcox Road, Vauxhall SW8, the location of where Powders laundrette was based. 

Rainbow plaques are designed to make hidden moments in LGBTQ+ history visible. They can be to celebrate and remember a person, film, song or indeed a venue that has a significant meaning in the LGBTQ+ Community.
The latest plaque to be installed is the 4th in the U.K but the first of the Rainbow Plaques to incorporate the Progress Pride (2018) colours.

Like the previous Oscar Wilde campaign in 2019, this plaque was able to be installed following a successful crowdfunding campaign – which included a special screening of the film at Clapham Picturehouse followed by a Q&A with the film’s cast and crew – in which the £2500 needed was raised in just 6 days. This paid for the design and production of the plaque, as well as some of the costs attached to the official unveiling event. 

The plaque was unveiled by the films, screenwriter – Hanif Kuershi, director – Stephen Frears and lead actor, Gordon Warnecke. They were reunited on Wilcox Road with other members of the of the talented production team, many of whom have not been back to the site since filming was complete. 

Hanif (who was nominated for his screenplay at the 1986 Oscars ) said
“What a privilege and honour it is to see ‘My Beautiful Laundrette’ being recognised with a Rainbow Plaque.
I’m really touched to see that the film still has such resonance within the LGBTQ+ community after all these years.
To everyone involved in making this plaque happen, on behalf of all the cast and crew, a huge heartfelt thank you.”

Also in attendance were the project partners and the generous donors who helped make the plaque happen along with local residents and businesses. 

Wandsworth Oasis were also in attendance and played a key role in the day by awarding a grant (to the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum) to help with the unveiling event costs. 

Also in attendance were the project partners and the generous donors who helped make the plaque happen along with local residents and businesses. 

Local HIV charity Wandsworth Oasis played a key role in the day by awarding a grant (to the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum) to help with the unveiling event costs. 

Christine Ansell (Wandsworth Oasis CEO) said.

 “It was a delight to be at the unveiling of London’s 2nd Rainbow Plaque, and see so many come out to support this great cause. Wandsworth is coming back to life after our long time in lockdown and it has never been so important for us all to work together to support each other and the groups in our area who deliver a much needed service especially to our LGBTQ+ community, as many of these groups such as the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum, do not receive regular funding from the authorities.

Wandsworth Oasis was proud to help fund this event and we continue to be active in and for our local community. We support Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum and work in partnership with them on their much-needed projects.”

David Robson (Chair Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum) said

“This was a really special event for all involved and a day I will remember for a long time to come.
In the absence of Pride (for a 2nd year) it was wonderful to be connected to community again and see all the hard work be received so well. 

It’s took over 4 and a half years to get this in the ground but well worth all the delays and challenges. Especially to see the cast and crew, stood on Wilcox Road again, shoulder to shoulder with the community, in celebration of this iconic piece of work.”

The plaque is available to visit now.

More Pictures on our Facebook page 

My Beautiful Laundrette – Out at Clapham

On July 24th, Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum in partnership with Studio Voltaire, Clapham Picturehouse and supported by Lambeth Council, will present a very special screening of an all-time British cinema classic, My Beautiful Laundrette.

Not only is the event the official launch of the Rainbow Plaque campaign but the screening will be followed by a Q&A with the film’s cast and crew: Stephen Frears (Director) Hanif Kureishi (Writer) and Gordon Warnecke (Actor), hosted by David Robson (Out at Clapham).

£2 from each ticket will go towards the launch event for the installation of Rainbow Plaque on Wilcox Road, the site of Powders, which is hoped to happen in early September.

The campaign to install the plaque was launched on June 28th, to mark the end of Pride Month, and went on to reach it’s target in a record breaking 6 days. 

Tickets for the screening are on sale now 

Hanif Kurieshi (My Beautiful Launderette – Screenwriter) said “Everyone who worked on My Beautiful Launderette is thrilled and delighted to be associated with the Rainbow Plaque, which not only celebrates us but the whole of the LBGTQ community and their continuing work for freedom in these difficult times”

Out at Clapham is thought to be London’s longest running LGBTQ+ film club.

Dan Hawkins (Manager – Clapham Picturehouse), David Robson (Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum & Out at Clapham Host) and Agnieszka Szara, established the club in 2013 with a screening of ‘How to Survive A Plaque’ on World AIDS Day as a partnership project between the Clapham Picturehouse Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum. 

Since then, it has gone on to screen 70 films/documentaries in 8 years including Supernova, Judy, Whitney, Chemsex, A Deal with the Universe, Are You Proud?, Pride and The Happy Prince. The latter of which became the inspiration for London’s first Rainbow Plaque campaign, in memory of Oscar Wilde back in 2019.

The screenings tend to focus on new LGBTQ+ cinema releases and often come as previews and Q&S’s with the Cast and Directors such as: Nick Broomfield, David Livingstone, Harry McQueen and the Lesbians, Gays Support the Miners (LGSM) 

But it is not always about the new releases. They also screen classics for the midnight Halloween specials (Rocky Horror, Clue and Hocus Pocus) and of course, the upcoming screening of ‘My Beautiful Laundrette’. 

Out At Clapham is much more than a trip to the cinema. It’s a tool of engagement on the issues affecting the LGBTQ+ community, creating a safe space for people to socialise along the way.

Rocky Horror Picture Show (Halloween 2019)

Dan Hawkins (Clapham Picturehouse Manager) Said 

“At Clapham Picturehouse we love our local community and film strands such as Out at Clapham are a huge part of who we are. I am extremely proud of everything we’ve achieved over the last eight years in bringing the best of LGBTQ+ cinema to Clapham and personally there have been many highlights, from preview screenings of award-winning releases such as God’s Own Country, Moonlight and Call Me By Your Name to bringing much smaller indy gems to a wider audience like Kiki, Beach Rats, Strike a Pose and 1985. However, nothing beats having the filmmakers in the house talking about their work, as we have had for Supernova, Judy, Pride, A Deal with the Universe and many more!

My Beautiful Laundrette is a landmark in British film in so many ways and we are all thrilled to be part of the rainbow plaque project that will help acknowledge its enduring resonance and help tie it to the local community. We very much look forward to welcoming Stephen, Hanif and Gordon to screen 1 this week!” 

Carol Mckay (Director of Programming for Picturehouse) said  

“Picturehouse are very proud of everything that Out at Clapham has achieved over its 8 years. 

The team work so hard to deliver a diverse selection of films and documentaries that is representative of the LGBTQ+ community and offers a safe space to debate the issues presented on screen.

I’m pleased to see that OAC are bouncing back stronger than ever with the recent preview Q&A screening of ‘Supernova’ and this week’s very special screening of ‘My Beautiful Laundrette.

Long may it run”

My Beautiful Launderette – Target Reached

After only 6 days, the ‘My Beautiful Laundrette’ Rainbow Plaque has reached it’s target of £2500.

The campaign was launched on Monday June 28th via the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum’s twitter account and was met with huge support from people across the LGBTQ+ Community as well as the arts and local residents. 

A total of 78 people donated to the campaign in record time and even made £10 more than the amount needed. However, £92.50 of the total was taken up by, previously uncalculated, Just Giving fees but the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum have kindly donated that amount back into the fund. 

With the money for the building costs now reached, the Plaque is now ready to go into production and is hoped to be ready in 5 weeks’ time.

On Saturday July 24th, there will be a screening of the film at Clapham Picturehouse hosted by ‘Out at Clapham’. £2 of the ticket price will go to the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum in support of the campaign and the costs for the Plaques launch event. 

Tickets can be purchased here

The screening will be followed by a Q&A with the films cast and production team including the writer of My Beautiful Launderette, Hanif Kureishi who had this to say about the campaign,  

“Everyone who worked on My Beautiful Launderette is thrilled and delighted to be associated with the Rainbow Plaque, which not only celebrates us but the whole of the LBGTQ community and their continuing work for freedom in these difficult times” 

Details of the launch event are yet to be announced but it is expected that Hanif will be joined by Gordon Warneke (who played Omar) and Stephen Frears (Director) to unveil the plaque on Wilcox Road alongside the leader of Lambeth Council, Claire Holland. 

People who donated to the campaign will be invited along to the launch and are asked to register via email on WandsworthLGBT@hotmail.co.uk

Laura Harford (Curator – Studio Voltaire) said 

“We are absolutely thrilled that we have reached the fundraising target for the Rainbow Plaque in such a short space of time! It is testament to the power of this landmark film that means so much to so many people. We are excited to now be installing the permanent plaque on Wilcox Road to honour this important history.” Laura Harford, Studio Voltaire

David Robson (Chair Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum) said 

“It’s been a long process to deliver this campaign but to see the reaction from such a broad spectrum of the community makes it so worth it. The rainbow plaque scheme has such huge potential to bring together every strand of our rainbow in celebration of our shared, and largely invisible, history.”  

My Beautiful Laundrette – Rainbow Plaque Launch

The Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum, in partnership with Studio Voltaire, have launched a Just Giving campaign for a Rainbow Plaque dedicated to ‘My Beautiful Laundrette‘.

The iconic movie was filmed across Wandsworth, Battersea and Vauxhall in 1985. It remains ground-breaking in its bold exploration of issues of sexuality, race, class and generational difference. As well as launching the career of 3-time Oscar winner, Daniel Day Lewis. 

The exterior of Powders Laundrette at night

11 Wilcox Road marks the location of where ‘Powders’ laundrette was based and where the plaque will be installed (in the pavement) if we reach our target of £2500. 

11 Wilcox Road today, the photo shows the exterior of a closed, shuttered cafe.

This will be the Forums’ second Rainbow Plaque campaign following 2019’s successful fundraiser and installation for ‘Oscar Wilde’ on Platform 10 of Clapham Junction station.

It will also be the first of the Rainbow plaques to incorporate the Progress Pride colours.

The Oscar Wilde plaque at Clapham Junction station

My Beautiful Launderette is often regarded as a classic of British Cinema, in 1999 The British Film Institute ranked My Beautiful Laundrette the 50th greatest British film of the 20th century.

Johnny and Omar standing in front of the laundrette

Hanif Kureishi, the films screenwriter, said: 

“Everyone who worked on My Beautiful Laundrette is thrilled and delighted to be associated with the Rainbow Plaque, which not only celebrates us but the whole of the LGBTQ community and their continuing work for freedom in these difficult times”

David Robson, Chair Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum, said:

“It’s taken us over 4 years to realise this project but it will be well worth the wait to see it installed in the ground of Wilcox road as a permanent memorial to this important piece of work. 

MBL is not just a classic British movie but a pioneer of intersectionality and the redesign of the Rainbow Plaque to incorporate the Progress Pride colours reflects that. “

There will be an ‘Out at Clapham‘ screening of the film at Clapham Picturehouse on July 24th and will be followed by a Q&A with Stephen Frears (Director), Hanif Kureshi (Writer) and Gordon Warnecke (Omar). 

Tickets for the screening are on sale now via the Clapham Picturehouse website £2 per ticket will go to direct to the Just Giving campaign. 

And you can donate to the campaign via Just Giving on the link below.


Rainbow Roads

As Pride Month draws to a close, it’s worth bringing out our ‘Rainbow Crossing’ story again that we first pulled together in November 2020.

To our knowledge, there has only been one addition since November 2020. 

That was over in Sutton, where they installed the countries first Trans Crossing on May 17th 2021 to mark IDAHOBIT. 

Read here for the full feature and to see if you’re borough is included in our research.

Have we missed one out? Do get in touch on LondonLGBTForumsNetwork@outlook.com and let us know! 

Look on the London LGBT Forums Network Twitter account for the Full link to photos

LGBT+ Ally Badge

This Pride Month, The Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Delivery Network have launched their ‘LGBT+ Ally’ Badge campaign.

The Network is made up of different organisations and social groups who deliver a LGBTQ+ based service in the borough of Wandsworth. 

They have been exploring the issue that rainbow lanyards/badges no longer help service users recognise an inclusive practitioner because of the wide use of the rainbow to celebrate the NHS during the pandemic.

As a result, they have developed a new badge, so that services users could be confident of LGBTQ+ inclusivity.

This badge incorporates the progress flag, together with the clear message ‘LGBT+ ally.’ Something that isn’t represented on the current NHS Rainbow lanyards. 

With a generous donation from the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum the network have purchased an initial 250 badges to provide to our members.

The Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Delivery Network was formed in January 2020 and is Chaired by Lucie Brooke from Free2B, the boroughs LGBTQ+ Youth group. 

“When we set up Free2B back in 2010 there were only a couple of other LGBTQ+ groups in the borough so, it is amazing to see so many different organisations all coming together,  committed to collaborating to support the community.”The badges are available to organisations who can demonstrate their LGBTQ+ allyship and are welcome to get in touch, to discuss the eligibility criteria: info@free2b-alliance.org.uk

To see a full list of the services in the borough, and who make up the Wandsworth LGBT Delivery Network, visit their page on the Wandsworth LGBT website.


Wandsworth LGBTQ+ & Furzedown Project Coffee Morning – Funding Extended

Wandsworth Oasis have awarded the Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum a new round of funding to continue to deliver their 50+ LGBTQ+ Coffee Morning in partnership with the Furzedown Project. 

Now in it’s 4th year, the coffee morning, like many services and social groups, has faced huge challenges during the COVID crisis but has found new ways to develop and support the existing members. 

Mick Morrell, Furzedown Project Manager, said:

“I know the Coffee Morning has been a lifeline through the lockdowns to its members. Using WhatsApp, Zoom, and when permissible meeting in person has provided stepping stones to cross the swamp of isolation. That the group has stayed together supporting one another and recently celebrated its 4th birthday is testament to its value. With the new funding promised by Oasis we can look forward to a better year ahead and a 5th birthday celebration with a proper cake to share.”

Gill Perkins, Wandsworth Oasis CEO, said:

“Everyone at Wandsworth Oasis is delighted to be funding the 50+ LGBTQ+ Coffee Morning for the last 3 years.  It’s great for a funder to see a project develop and to be able to see its positive impact on so many people.  

Lockdown saw the project go from strength to strength as David moved the project online and actively worked with all the members in ways that worked for each individual to help them combat isolation and support one another.”

David Robson, Chair of Wandsworth LGBTQ+ Forum and Coffee Morning Project Facilitator, said:

“As we emerge from the pandemic there is going to be a lot of work needed to be done on rebuilding our communities. 

Our funding ended back in May and it would have been a disaster for us to end the service at a time when people needed us most.

I’m so pleased Wandsworth Oasis have been able to fund us once again, until November 2021, to continue this important project.

Long may it continue.” 

UK’s first ever transgender flag pedestrian crossing unveiled in London

Sutton Council in partnership with the Sutton LGBT Forum have launched the U.K’s first Trans pedestrian crossing. The crossing was installed in Sutton Town Centre and launched on May 17th 2021 to coincide with IDAHOBIT (Interntional Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia).

The crossing follows on from last year’s Rainbow crossing that was installed to celebrate Pride Month and the boroughs LGBTQ+ Community. 

Launching on IDAHOBIT has particular significance. Until recently, the Met Police didn’t publish the Transphobic hate crime stats across the capital and often, Trans Hate crime goes unreported. 

Rachel Simpkins, Sutton LGBTQ+ Forum’s Trans Project Lead, said:

“Our hope is that this Trans crossing will hopefully pave the way for more Trans crossings around the UK which in turn would help bring inclusivity in our society at large. 

We (Sutton LGBT Forum) offer support advice and engage with the Trans community not only from Sutton but its neighbouring boroughs.” 

Cllr Jake Short, Sutton Council’s Lead Member for Equalities, said:

“I am delighted to see this celebration of the richness and diversity that our transgender community brings to Sutton.

Until transgender people and other minority groups are able to live without fear of discrimination or hate, we must continue to demonstrate our support and stand with them to clearly demonstrate our commitment to eliminating transphobia.”

More information on the Sutton LGBTQ+ Forum and their upcoming activities can be found on their website, and via their newsletter.

International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia is observed on 17 May and is a worldwide celebration of sexual and gender diversities.

A group stand in front of the new Trans Flag crossing

Out at Clapham is back!

After a break of 20 months, ‘Out At Clapham’ are back on the silver screen with a bang! 

On Wednesday 23rd June (Start time – 19.30) they will be hosting a very special preview screening of British drama ‘Supernova’ at Clapham Picturehouse. 

The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Harry Macqueen and will be hosted by OAC co-founder, David Robson.

Running now for 8 years, Out at Clapham is London’s longest running LGBT Film Club. 

In March 2020 they were due to screen ‘And then we Danced’ which would have been their 70th film in 7 years but the screening had to be a pulled in line with the national lockdown.

Dan Hawkins, Clapham Picturehouse Manager, said:“The pandemic has had a massive impact on almost all industries in the UK and the cinema industry is of course no exception. 

The last year or so have been incredibly tough, but we are absolutely delighted to be back and to once again bring the big screen experience to our loyal customers. 

We love our local community and film strands such as Out at Clapham are a huge part of who we are. 

I am absolutely thrilled that OAC are returning with this wonderful British drama, which I was lucky enough to see it at the London Film Festival. 

It’s a beautifully shot and incredibly moving story with two knockout performances at his centre.

This is our first live Q&A event since returning and we’re absolutely delighted to be welcoming director Harry Macqueen to the cinema!”

Tickets for this screening are available now.https://www.picturehouses.com/movie-details/000/HO00010919/supernova-q-a

Stop Hate UK Helpline to launch in Wandsworth

The 24-hour Stop Hate UK Helpline service is being launched in Wandsworth.

The line gives people directly affected by hate crime, and witnesses to hate crime, a safe and independent place to talk about their experiences and to explore their options for how to take things further.

Stop Hate UK is working with Wandsworth Council to introduce the helpline. The council works with partners to drive out hate crime, encourage people to report it and offer support to people affected by it.

Robyn Thomas, head of community safety for Wandsworth Council said: “We are determined to make Wandsworth a safe borough for everyone and work with partners to do all we can to stamp out a crime that has such a devastating effect on victims, families and communities.

“One of the most effective ways of stopping hate crime is to ensure all incidents are reported, which is why we are delighted to be working with Stop Hate UK to support people to speak out.”

Stop Hate UK is a national charity that provides independent and confidential support to people who are affected by all forms of Hate Crime. Rose Simkins, Chief Executive of Stop Hate UK, said: “All forms of Hate Crime are significantly under-reported and some individuals, people and communities are reluctant or unwilling to talk to the police or their council.

“We are able to support people who feel they have nowhere else to turn. Contact with our helpline, or other reporting channels, might be the first time an individual has talked to someone about the things they are experiencing. Other people may have tried to get help but find they are not satisfied with the response they received. No one should have to suffer Hate Crime in silence. Sadly the occurrence of Hate Crime has increased nationally but, working together with the council, statutory and community bodies, we can help to make a difference in Wandsworth.”

People can contact the Stop Hate UK helpline anonymously if they prefer. Where someone has chosen to give their personal details to Stop Hate UK, their trained staff and volunteers will ask who they want their details to be shared with. The charity can also share information with the police and council, with consent, to ensure that those affected by Hate Crime, in any way, can access the support they need.

Anyone in Wandsworth can contact the Stop Hate UK helpline to talk about how they have been directly or indirectly affected by Hate Crime.

The Stop Hate UK helpline is open 24 hours a day, every day of the year on 0800 138 1625. The helpline is also available by text message on 07717 989 025 and by email to talk@stophateuk.org. Service users with Hearing Impairments can report via interactive BSL by clicking the link on our website www.stophateuk.org. Victims and witnesses can also chat on the web or fill in an online form by visiting www.stophateuk.org/talk.