Boy George has said that gay men are now less willing to stand out and attract attention.

The star was speaking a week after his close friend, the socialite Philip Sallon, was viciously attacked on a night out.

He suggested that there was a current trend in the gay community to fit in.

“These things go in circles,” he told the Guardian.

“In the early 80s there was this sense that things were changing, and becoming more open-minded. But we don’t have that sort of gorgeous youth culture any more, the glam rockers, the New Romantics. People aren’t so individual any more. There is this sense of why would you want to stand out and make a show of yourself?”

“You can find that sort of attitude in the gay community too. That if you are an exhibitionist you are somehow spoiling the big assimilation. Most gay men go out of their way to look normal and fit in, but Philip is not of that breed.”

Mr Sallon remains in hospital after suffering a fractured skull and broken bones.

Police have been unable to trace witnesses or uncover CCTV footage of the assault.

George said that attack was probably motivated by homophobia because of his friend’s flamboyant appearance.

“It’s hard to say and you don’t want to jump to conclusions, but it must have been something to do with the way he looked,” he said. “I can’t think of any other reason. Philip is not a bruiser.”