Programme for OUTing The Past National Festival of LGBT History at The Higgins Bedford
The Higgins Bedford is proud to be joining London, Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham, Cardiff and Belfast as a hub venue for the National Festival of LGBT History in 2018. On Saturday 17th February the art gallery and museum will host a day of free talks and workshops. Visitors can drop in between 11.15am and 4.30pm to discover hidden histories and stories from LGBT communities in Bedfordshire and beyond.
Tony Fenwick CEO of School’s Out UK, an organisation that works towards equality for LGBT people in schools and education, will begin the day with two workshops. The first of these is aimed at teachers and educators and looks at how to make your school a safe, welcoming and inclusive space. The second takes a broader look at why equality matters and other issues facing LGBT communities in education.
The day’s talks begin at 1.30pm when Mark Hignett is presenting the story told through hundreds of love letters between two soldiers during World War Two. At 2pm Alison Child then tells the story of Gwen Farrar and Norah Blaney who were popular performers and household names during the 1920s. The talk includes recordings, photographs and video footage from their unique act.
At. 2.30pm Paul Dillane, Executive Director for the Kaleidoscope Trust, and previously head of the UK Gay and Lesbian Immigration Group, talks about the criminalisation and persecution of LGBT people across the globe and how this relates to the Commonwealth and Britian’s colonial past.
At 3pm British filmmaker Ed Webb-Ingall introduces his film ‘we have been rather invaded: 30 years since section 28’. The film looks at the moment on 23rd May 1988 when four lesbian protesters interrupted the 6 O’clock News causing Sue Lawley to say ‘we have been rather invaded’ as she continued to read the news.
At 3.30pm Janet Green, author of Rebel Without a Clue – a Memoir recalls her own experiences of lesbian clubbing in the late 1960s. To finish the day at 4pm Dan Vo, coordinator of the award-winning LGBTQ tours at the V&A introduces the work of Peter Travis AM, gay designer and ceramicist who is possibly best remembered for his 1961 design for Speedo, nicknamed the ‘budgie smuggler’.
We look forward to welcoming you on our inaugural OUTing the Past National Festival LGBT history day and hope you enjoy the workshops, talks, displays, and activities. Please see our website for further information.