21st February 2008
DUP minister’s gay rugby comments “nasty and spiteful” 7
2:40 PM — A Northern Ireland minister responsible for sport has been accused of playing party politics with his recent attack on a gay rugby team.Edwin Poots said earlier this week that he "cannot fathom" why such a team is necessary and said it was a form of "apartheid."Yesterday the executive director of the cross-community Alliance Party claimed that Mr Poots' comments were made because his party, the DUP, lost a recent council by-election.
Toilet murder victim is named 9
1:15 PM — A gay man who was fatally stabbed in a public toilet in Surrey known as a cruising spot has been named as Peter Jeffrey Akers.The 50-year-old from Wallington was attacked with a large carving knife at around 3pm on Tuesday in toilets near Walton Bridge that police said are "a popular meeting place for men."He was taken by air ambulance to St Peter's Hospital in Chertsey where he died at 5.30pm.
Stonewall advert vandalised in Blackburn 5
12:35 PM — One of 600 billboard adverts questioning homophobia in schools that have been displayed across the country has been attacked by vandals.The poster in the town of Blackburn, was "covered in abusive graffiti," the Lancashire Telegraph reports.Advertising space in England, Scotland and Wales was donated to gay equality organisation Stonewall by Titan Outdoor Advertising Ltd.The message - 'Some people are gay. Get over it!' - is displayed in giant, tabloid-style capital letters, on a bright red background.
20th February 2008
Man arrested on suspicion of cruising murder 9
5:50 PM — A 29-year-old man handed himself in at a police station earlier today and has been arrested on suspicion of murdering a 50-year-old gay man.The murder suspect will be questioned by detectives about a knife attack in a public toilet in Walton-on-Thames in Surrey yesterday afternoon.The victim was stabbed at 3pm yesterday in toilets near Walton Bridge that police said are "a popular meeting place for men."
Gay man murdered at Surrey cruising spot 9
1:15 PM — Police have launched a murder investigation after a man in his 50s was stabbed at a public toilet in Walton-on-Thames in Surrey.The victim was discovered near Walton Bridge at 3pm yesterday. He was taken by air ambulance to St Peter's Hospital in Chertsey where he died at 5.30pm.A police spokesperson said the victim was gay and described the toilets where he was attacked as "a popular meeting place for men."
Paddick welcomes poll result 11
7:30 AM — The Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London has welcomed a PinkNews.co.uk poll that showed he has strong support in the gay community.Brian Paddick, a former Metropolitan police Deputy Assistant Commissioner, won less first preference votes than incumbent Mayor and Labour's candidate Ken Livingstone in the poll but took more second preference votes.
DUP minister calls gay rugby “apartheid” 7
6:35 AM — The Northern Ireland minister for arts and culture has attacked the formation of a gay rugby team in the province.Edwin Poots said he "cannot fathom why people see the necessity to develop an apartheid in sport."The minister is a member of the Democratic Unionist Party, an organisation notorious for its homophobia.As a councillor in Lisburn, County Antrim, he tried to ban gay and lesbian couples from holding civil partnerships in the town hall.
19th February 2008
Paisley Snr implicated in corruption allegations 5
4:20 PM — The First Minister of Northern Ireland is facing questions about his future following the resignation of his son as a junior minister in the province's Executive.Ian Paisley Snr, 81, has been drawn into the controversy surrounding his son and namesake's lobbying on behalf of a property developer.In May 2007 his son caused outrage with homophobic comments he made in a magazine interview.
Brian Paddick tops PinkNews.co.uk poll 11
3:20 PM — The Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London has come top of a poll of PinkNews.co.uk's London readers.Incumbent Labour Mayor Ken Livingstone won the most first preference votes, but was overtaken by Brian Paddick when valid second preference votes were counted.The Mayor of London is elected by the Supplementary Vote (SV) system, and PinkNews.co.uk used the same system to calculate which candidate won the poll.
In the front row at London Fashion Week
2:00 PM — It's a five day fashion extravaganza which transforms the Natural History Museum into a catwalk and fills the grounds with a vast exhibition of more 100 designers showcasing their talents.People make proclamations such as "champagne is my life" without irony. Anna Wintour is oft expected but never appears.Lights, and clothes, bubbles but rarely a canape, beautiful people and possibly a Girl Aloud. There's just so much of Fashion week.
Victim of homophobic thug still haunted by attack 2
2:00 PM — A gay man whose home was torched by a prolific young thug as he and his partner slept inside has said he is still haunted by the attack.Nick Hughes battled the fire which started when Sonny Lockwood poured petrol through the letter box his home in New Addington, Croydon before igniting it with a parachute flare.While he fought the flames naked, he ordered his partner Peter Cameron to remain in their bedroom with the door closed, thinking he would have a better chance of survival.
Charity welcomes landmark cyberbullying conviction 6
12:20 PM — An anti-bullying charity has welcomed a landmark ruling on cyberbullying handed down by a court in Brighton.A 17-year-old was convicted of harassment after creating a fake profile on the social networking site Bebo and driving his former friend to attempt suicide by luring him into an online relationship and then telling friends and teachers intimate details of their online conversations.The 16-year-old victim, from Brighton, East Sussex, swallowed 60 painkillers. Brighton Youth Court was told the victim's life was saved by his mother, who took him to hospital.
Interview: Mayoral candidate wants London free of the EU
12:20 PM — The UK Independence Party is misunderstood and misrepresented, their candidate for Mayor of London tells me when we meet.Gerard Batten is a somewhat unusual politician, in that he is a member of a parliament that he desires to have no power over the lives of his constituents.As an MEP for London since 2004, he spends his days in Brussels trying to think up new ways to discredit and dismantle the European Union (or "ferment rebellion" as he describes it).
Imperial War Museum appeals for LGBT experiences
12:05 PM — An exhibition focusing on how war and conflict have shaped people in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities' lives from 1945 to the present day will open later this year at the Imperial War Museum North in Manchester.The Imperial War Museum is the national museum of the experiences of people who have lived, fought and died in conflicts involving Britain and the Commonwealth since 1914.Organisers want to hear from LGBT people who can share their experiences, which will form part of the final display.
London Falcons’ dream of Cup glory is over
11:30 AM — Gay football league leaders the London Falcons' FC dreams of a league and cup double were well and truly put to rest at Sparrows Lane over the weekend.A resurgent Manchester team succeeded in gaining revenge for their last minute defeat to the Falcons in the league by not only winning 1-4 to book a place in their first ever GNC final but by dominating a lacklustre and underperforming Falcons side, who never looked like coming away with the victory.
Minister to speak at workplace equality conference
11:20 AM — Leading employers in Scotland will discuss how to tackle homophobia in the workplace at a conference in Edinburgh tomorrow.The event, organised by gay equality organisation Stonewall Scotland, will also aim to raise awareness of employment law on sexual orientation.The Scottish Minister for Communities and Sport, Stewart Maxwell, is set to address the conference.
Tribunal told about homophobia at BMW showroom 2
12:40 AM — A gay salesman was forced to leave his job at a luxury car dealership after colleagues repeatedly made homophobic comments towards him, a tribunal heard yesterday.Ben Hamilton, 26, claims his workmates at a BMW showroom branded him "the nice poof", "faggot" and "bender Ben."He told the hearing he was also banned from wearing pink clothing to work.
18th February 2008
Body identified as King’s lover
6:20 PM — A body found at Hulton Abbey, Staffordshire has been identified as Sir Hugh Despenser the Younger, the supposed gay lover of the Plantagenet king, Edward II.Sir Hugh died a a gruesome death, hung, drawn and quartered for treason in 1326 after Edward II abdicated. The remains were found in the 1970s but only just identified by anthropologist Mary Lewis says.
Sopranos and ukuleles at Drill Hall fundraisers 6
4:30 PM — Two benefit concerts in aid of The Drill Hall, the renowned gay theatre and arts centre off Tottenham Court Road, are to be held in April.It is facing closure after its Arts Council funding was recently withdrawn.A high-profile fundraising campaign is under way to replace the £250,000 annual grant and rescue the venue, which is located just off Tottenham Court Road in London.
Gay groups welcome Paisley resignation 5
4:00 PM — Ian Paisley Jnr's announcement today that he is to resign from the Northern Ireland Executive has been welcomed by groups working for gay equality in the province.Mr Paisley Jnr was a junior minister in the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister, the department responsible for equality in the power-sharing executive.He resigned today amid allegations that he lobbied on behalf of a property developer in relation to a £50m government land deal.