Anti-LGBT Christians target Essex gay club
An anti-LGBT+ Christian group has reportedly targeted gay nightclub Colors in Basildon, Essex.
The Christian sect allegedly set up a stall outside the venue on Monday (August 27) and told people to not go there.
It comes after anti-LGBT+ Pride leaflets were distributed through residents’ letterboxes in Basildon.
David Burton-Sampson, Basildon Labour deputy leader, who is gay, told regional newspaper The Echo: “I am surprised and somewhat concerns to hear a group were outside Colors nightclub, the only LGBT venue in the borough, encouraging people not to use the venue and to repent.”
Burton-Sampson, who won a Stonewall Award for convincing a number of Essex councils to display rainbow flags during Pride month, added that the “backwards looking views” of this Christian group do not reflect “those of the majority of Christians.”
Taking to Twitter on Tuesday (August 28), he also posted: “I am saddened that this is happening in #Basildon.”
Burton-Sampson also said a report had been filed with police over the incident, adding: “Basildon councillor files second ‘anti-gay hate crime’ police report in two weeks, as preachers set up stall outside Colors nightclub.”
Matt Hill, a volunteer for cycling charity Sustrans, posted on Twitter about the Christian group outside Colors.
“Religious nutters, nutters because of the content, not their faith, outside Colors in Basildon,” he wrote.
“Fire and brimstone stuff. I pray the location isn’t deliberate.”
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One of the flyer’s designs features the words “what comes after Pride” on top of a rainbow flag. The reverse of the leaflet describes the event as “evil,” adding that those who attend it are “disgraceful.”
Despite not explicitly referring to LGBT+ people, another is reported to make links between the community and destruction, as well as mentioning locations of popular queer clubs and venues in London.
“It’s extremely worrying that in modern times a group thinks it is appropriate to put such literature into a person’s home,” Burton-Sampson told local news outlet Yellow Advertiser at the time.
Xpand Christianity has been confirmed as the printing company behind the leaflets; however, they said they did not know who had delivered them into people’s homes.