Tales from the city

Banner: reading 'Defy Clause 28 - defend Liverpool lesbian and gay rights'

© News From Nowhere/Julie Callaghan

Opens 13 October 2017

This powerful exhibition marks the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Sexual Offences Act with stories from Liverpool’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT+) community over the past five decades. 

The exhibition reflects how the lives and experiences of Liverpool’s LGBT+ community have changed from 1967 to 2017. Individual stories are told through a mixture of objects, costume, art, photography, film and oral history interviews. The exhibition also explores the impact of national events such as Section 28, civil partnerships, marriage, age of consent equality, and equal adoption rights.

The experiences of Liverpool's LGBT+ community reveal devastating cases of discrimination and prejudice but also examples of self-determination, resilience and creativity. 50 years on from 1967 Sexual Offences Act, the exhibition offers a reflection on the significant advances that have been made, while also remembering there is still work to be done for full equality.

Exhibition highlights include:

  • A collection of objects and interviews related to The Magic Clock; a pub which was close to Liverpool’s Queen Square and part of an underground gay scene between 1940 and the 60s.
  • Artworks such as Wheel of Fortune by Yankel Feather and drag queen portraits by Liverpool artist, Ben Youdan.
  • An opportunity to watch and listen to the experiences of a variety of LGBT+ people living in the city. The voices span five decades and include a film of DJ Pete Price and Roger Merchant talking about gay aversion therapy. 
  • Section 28 protest material from Liverpool’s LGBT+ community.
  • Liverpool Pride material; including a flyer from Liverpool’s first Gay Pride Week in 1979, flyers from later Prides in the early 1990s and t-shirts, banners and promotional material from recent official Pride events in the 2000s.
  • Order of service from the UK’s first same sex civil partnership on religious premises at Ullet Road Unitarian Church, Liverpool.
  • Brookside sign, accompanied by the story of the first pre-watershed lesbian kiss by writer, Shaun Duggan.
  • A selection of costumes including Holly Johnson’s Vivienne Westwood suit, Lily Savage’s snow leopard outfit and local trans artist and activist Sophie Green’s wedding dress.

Delivered by the Museum of Liverpool in partnership with Homotopia