A rainbow flag will be raised on Friday, 1 February outside Bradford’s City Hall, to mark the start of LGBT history month 2019. Events will be taking place throughout the month.
The flag will be raised at Bradford Council’s Centenary Square flagpoles. All are welcome to attend the ceremony, at 10am on 1 February.
LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans) history month is held in February each year to celebrate and recognise LGBT people and culture, past and present. This year’s theme is Peace, Activism and Reconciliation.
Bradford Council’s Youth Service will be marking LGBT history month with a series of youth group sessions throughout the month focusing on LGBT+ themes. LGBT+ includes people who are ‘queer’, ‘questioning’ and other different ways people may define their gender and sexuality. The Youth Service sessions during February will also include the Colours Youth Movement group, aimed at LGBT+ young people who are from black and minority ethnic groups.
Organisations are putting on events to celebrate LGBT history month.
West Yorkshire Queer Stories, a collaboration between Brick Box Rooms and Leeds Queer Film Festival, is hosting a night of queer short films from 7pm on Thursday, 14 February at The Brick Box Rooms on Ivegate, Bradford.
At the same venue, Brick Box Rooms will be hosting their own ‘Strike a Pose’ night, with a film screening, vogue dance workshop and party. This will be from 7pm on Saturday, 16 February.
Bradford College is providing a programme of films, documentaries, exhibitions and workshops. A highlight will be a lunchtime screening on Wednesday, 13 February of the documentary Invisible Women, ‘the story of two LGBTQ revolutionaries’. This will be followed by questions with Angela Cooper, one of the extraordinary women featured in the 25 minute film.
Kala Sangam, working with the Peace Museum, will present a performance of Ice&Fire Theatre Company’s production This Is Who I Am, on Thursday, 21 February. The show offers first-hand accounts of LGBT+ people seeking asylum in the UK, read by members of the Actors for Human Rights Network. There will also be a post-show discussion.
The sexual health charity MESMAC will provide a number of information events, workshops and training throughout the month, at venues including Bradford Council, Bradford College and the University of Bradford.
Bradford Council will be supporting LGBT history month on social media, including on its Instagram account BradfordYouthVoice.
Cllr Richard Dunbar, Bradford Council’s LGBT+ Champion, said: “In Bradford, yet again, we prove what an exciting, vibrant and welcoming district we are, with this programme for LGBT history month. There is something for everyone: film screenings, debates, plays and even a vogueing workshop!
“The golden thread which runs through our month of activities is an understanding of the struggles that the LGBT+ community has endured, but also a celebration of what we have achieved. That is why we place so much emphasis on support groups to ensure those who need the help have someone to turn to.
“Bradford Council is proud of the diversity of the people and organisations involved, including Equity Partnership, MESMAC, The Brick Box, Bradford Council’s Youth Service, Kala Sangam, The Peace Museum and Bradford College to name but a few. This is going to be a great month, do come and join us.”
Coun Abdul Jabar, Executive Member for Neighbourhoods and Community Safety, said: “LGBT history month is all about celebrating solidarity and difference. We are delighted to be raising the LGBT flag again to show our support for inclusivity and tolerance of all people.”
Kersten England, Bradford Council’s Chief Executive, said: “Raising the flag for LGBT history month shows our support for events happening locally across the district, and demonstrates nationally how we are backing the aims of LGBT equality. Thank you to our partners across the district who are providing a packed programme of fun and educational events.
“I’m particularly proud of the work our Youth Service is doing during LGBT history month and indeed all year round. Young people can feel very vulnerable as they start to grow as people and understand themselves. Providing much needed support, a safe space for young people to discuss their worries, and a place to meet friends can be life-changing.”
Bradford Council’s youth service groups provide peer support for young people to meet, socialise and get involved in activities and events. Anyone interested in the Youth Service’s activities can find out more by searching for Bradford Youth Service on the Council’s website.
To find out more about LGBT history month events, please contact the organisers directly.