Gay businesses, bars, clubs and community centres in the popular area of Soho are to be encouraged and improved under a public consultation by Westminster City Council aimed at regenerating the area for its diverse communities.

The Soho Action Plan was launched today and seeks public views on how the West End, which includes popular gay areas such as Old Compton Street and Soho Square, can serve its visitors better.

Its draft estimates that 7-10% of Westminster residents are LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender.)

The area is described as a place where the gay community feels welcome and safe, but recognises that this is not always the case, calling for an LGBT community centre.

Soho lies in the heart of London’s West End, in the area neatly housed by Tottenham Court Road, Oxford Circus and Piccadilly Circus tube Stations, and Cambridge Circus.

The Soho Action Plan is out to public consultation from 12 September – 27 October 2006.