Timeline of LGBT history in the United Kingdom

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This is a timeline of notable events in the history of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in the United Kingdom. There is evidence that LGBT activity in the United Kingdom existed as far back as the days of Celtic Britain.


Celtic Britain

1st century

2nd century

Antinous Antinous, 2nd cent. A.D. (NAM 417 1-4-2020).jpg

3rd century

4th century

5th century

6th century

8th century

Alcuin of York, 8th-century cleric and scholar Raban-Maur Alcuin Otgar.jpg
Alcuin of York, 8th-century cleric and scholar

11th century

12th century


13th century

14th century

The head of Piers Gaveston, 1st Earl of Cornwall, is delivered to Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster; Humphrey de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford; and Edmund FitzAlan, 9th Earl of Arundel, for inspection. A Chronicle of England - Page 280 - Gaveston's Head Shown to the Earl of Lancaster.jpg
The head of Piers Gaveston, 1st Earl of Cornwall, is delivered to Thomas, 2nd Earl of Lancaster; Humphrey de Bohun, 4th Earl of Hereford; and Edmund FitzAlan, 9th Earl of Arundel, for inspection.

16th century

King James I of England, VI of Scotland Portrait of James I of England wearing the jewel called the Three Brothers in his hat.jpg
King James I of England, VI of Scotland

17th century

18th century

18th century illustration of a "Molly" (contemporary term for an effeminate homosexual) Macaroni 19C illus.jpg
18th century illustration of a "Molly" (contemporary term for an effeminate homosexual)

19th century

William Blake's Lot and His Daughters, Huntington Library, c. 1800 William Blake Lot and His Daughters Butlin 381.jpg
William Blake's Lot and His Daughters, Huntington Library, c. 1800
The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, John Martin, 1852 John Martin - Sodom and Gomorrah.jpg
The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah , John Martin, 1852
Fanny and Stella (Park & Boulton) on stage Park and Boulton (Fanny and Stella) restored.jpg
Fanny and Stella (Park & Boulton) on stage

20th century

Christopher Isherwood (left) and W. H. Auden (right), photographed by Carl Van Vechten, 1939 Isherwood and Auden by Carl van Vechten, 1939.jpg
Christopher Isherwood (left) and W. H. Auden (right), photographed by Carl Van Vechten, 1939


Radclyffe Hall Radclyffe Hall, ca. 1930.jpg
Radclyffe Hall




Throughout the Cold War period, anti-gay sentiment was high in the United States and the United Kingdom. This was later called the Lavender Scare . The then Home Secretary, Sir David Maxwell Fyfe, had promised "a new drive against male vice" that would "rid England of this plague." As many as 1,000 men were locked up in Britain's prisons every year amid a widespread police clampdown on homosexual offences. Undercover officers conducted plain clothes surveillance on places where gay men were known to meet. [100] The prevailing mood has been described as one of barely concealed paranoia. [101]

Alan Turing in 1930 Alan Turing az 1930-as evekben (cropped).jpg
Alan Turing in 1930


The book Homosexual Behavior Among Males by Wainwright Churchill breaks ground as a scientific study approaching homosexuality as a fact of life and introduces the term "homoerotophobia", a possible precursor to "homophobia". [117] The courts decided that transsexuals could not get married; Justice Ormerod found that in the case of Talbot (otherwise Poyntz) v. Talbot where one spouse was a post-operative transsexual their marriage was not permitted. Justice Ormerod stated that Marriage is a relationship which depends on sex, not on gender. [118] [119]


Quentin Crisp Crisp 1982.jpg
Quentin Crisp


The red ribbon is a symbol for solidarity with HIV-positive people and those living with AIDS Red Ribbon.svg
The red ribbon is a symbol for solidarity with HIV-positive people and those living with AIDS
Activists target a bus operated by Brian Souter's Stagecoach company at a rally in Albert Square, Manchester, on 15 July 2000 Section28-cropped.jpg
Activists target a bus operated by Brian Souter's Stagecoach company at a rally in Albert Square, Manchester, on 15 July 2000


London gay pub bombing in 1999 killed three and injured 70 AdmiralDuncan.jpg
London gay pub bombing in 1999 killed three and injured 70
The landmark case – P v S and Cornwall County Council – finds that an employee who was about to undergo gender reassignment was wrongfully dismissed. It was the first piece of case law, anywhere in the world, which prevented discrimination in employment or vocational education because someone is trans. [164] [165]
Angela Eagle Official portrait of Ms Angela Eagle MP crop 2.jpg
Angela Eagle

21st century


Tony Blair's Labour government enacted the Civil Partnership Act 2004 WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM ANNUAL MEETING 2009 - Tony Blair.jpg
Tony Blair's Labour government enacted the Civil Partnership Act 2004


Nicole Sinclaire Nicole Sinclaire.JPG
Nicole Sinclaire
Andy Street Andy Street Mayor.jpg
Andy Street


See also

Related Research Articles

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Further reading