The Brixton Fairies: 1970s gay squat

Discussion in 'Brixton' started by editor, May 10, 2004.

  1. editor

    editor hiraethified

    Can I just tell you that as a long term Brixtonite, I am utterly fed up seeing articles that always seem to frame their content in relation to the riots (that happened a long, long time ago) or other negative aspects of the area. I don't think it's something that plays upon the minds of its residents, yet it seems to be trotted out every time Brixton is mentioned in the press.
    Mrs Magpie likes this.
  2. editor

    editor hiraethified

    You mentioned the "stigma habitually glued to the area" in your opening paragraph. That's the sort of first-line negative references that I find annoying.
  3. boohoo

    boohoo No.

    I think it's the use of the word stigma or looking at the negative image that Brixton has.
    Brixton is littered with tons of other interesting histories - whether to do with shopping(Electric Avenue's street lighting and Bon Marche) or the squat scene (From Brixton Fairies to Cooltan - read some Martin Millar novels!) or the theatre folk who lived in the area or the arrival of the West Indian Community.... and did I mention murals...:D
  4. editor

    editor hiraethified

    But by referring to it in your opening paragraph, you're actually perpetuating it.

    Not sure how your essay is going to "eradicate" anything either, btw.
  5. ddraig

    ddraig dros ben llestri

    it is not rude at all!

    by mentioning the 'stigma', you are drawing peoples attention to it when there is no need.
    what stigma btw?
  6. Mrs Magpie

    Mrs Magpie On a bit of break...

    I don't think he's being rude. I think you're being precious and over-sensitive though...oh the touchiness of youth who think they know everything and get all snippy when someone doesn't totally lap up their every utterance.....
    ddraig likes this.
  7. boohoo

    boohoo No.

    I think it's quite hard when people look at Brixton not to mention the riots because if there wasn't riots here, you might as well write about anywhere (if that makes sense). It's the wanting to say Brixton's alright even if they did riot 30 years ago. Look Brixton has culture and other stuff. It would be nice to ignore the riots and write about Brixton's heritage without it all revolving around the riots or crimes, past or current or problems that have arisen or were there before the riots. However, many would say to ignore it, is missing out something that impacts the area and makes it what it is.
  8. editor

    editor hiraethified

    If you were actually listening you'd realise that I've been very helpful indeed. I'm helping you to avoid writing really dull, negative clich├ęs about your subject matter.
  9. Mrs Magpie

    Mrs Magpie On a bit of break...

    Actually you didn't read his post properly. He didn't say that at all. Read it again.
  10. ddraig

    ddraig dros ben llestri

    indeed, "why can't everyone be as excited and vibrant!!!!"
    e2a - to Mrs M post 131
    kk - if you were the editor or moderator, would you appreciate someone joining up to get help with their homework/project? and then calling them rude when they point out some advice after reading your rationale?
  11. Mrs Magpie

    Mrs Magpie On a bit of break...

    Well, you completely misread ats's post. So pot, kettle, sooty arse
  12. editor

    editor hiraethified

  13. brixtonscot

    brixtonscot Well-Known Member

  14. CH1

    CH1 "Red Guard"(NLYL)

    Interesting film - and great to see one of the interviewees, who worked at Decca when I did (1977-78). Nice to know he's still around.
  15. Puddy_Tat

    Puddy_Tat meh

    thread bump

    noticed in tame out that there's a screening of the film at the cinema museum (kennington / elephant-ish) this Sunday (19.10.14)

    free, but pre-booking required

    more here
  16. editor

    editor hiraethified

    Gramsci likes this.
  17. RoseGibbs

    RoseGibbs New Member

    Dera Julian, I am currently doing some research on the Gay Liberation Front and am interested in the community activities and street theatre actions that were part of the gay liberation movement. I would love to have the chance to speak with you, if you had the time. Or in fact as well, if you were able to put me in touch with other people who were involved, that would be fantastic. I look forward to hearing from you. with best wishes Rose
  18. RoseGibbs

    RoseGibbs New Member

    Dear Tom,

    I am currently doing some research on the Gay Liberation Front in London and would love to know more about your experiences in it? I wondered if it might be possible for me to speak with you some how.

    I look forward to hearing from you

    best Rose

  19. RoseGibbs

    RoseGibbs New Member

    Dear Ian, I am currently doing some research into the gay liberation movement of the 70s, and am specifically interested in the use of street theatre. I would love to come and talk with you about your involvement with the Brixton Faeries. I am sure you must be very busy, but it would be great to hear about it. If you have other suggestions of people who were involved and would be keen to share the history with me I would be very grateful. I look forward to hearing from you. With best wishes Rose
  20. Shippou-Sensei

    Shippou-Sensei 4:1:2.5

    Just obtained this photo of the Brixton Faeries (featuring Shippou-Chichiue)

    oryx, editor, Gramsci and 3 others like this.
  21. Shippou-Sensei

    Shippou-Sensei 4:1:2.5

    It was his funeral today. The photo was very much admired and the Faeries fondly remembered.
    snowy_again and Gramsci like this.
  22. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    Great photo. Do you know the year it was taken?

    Looks like Railton road?
  23. Shippou-Sensei

    Shippou-Sensei 4:1:2.5

    I don't know the year at the moment I will check later. also yes as far as I am aware that is railton road
  24. CH1

    CH1 "Red Guard"(NLYL)


    I would have thought this was 1970s or early 1980s - but difficult to be sure. The van seems really antique. Things in Railton Road have changed a lot physically due to riot damage clearance, shop fronts being removed for flat conversions and other things.

    I think it possible that the scene is outside 151 Railton Road, one of a number houses in Railton Road that were part of the Brixton Housing Co-op.
    The Sitexed building next door in this Google maps shot suggests the change from terraced house with front steps to the new-build health centre. I'm not totally sure though as I cannot see any decorative balls (finials) in the original picture (one of the fairies is standing in front).

    In any event in case anyone is interested Mr Ian Towson a local historian with a particular interest and expertise in Queer Brixton will be doing a walk covering the area. This will be on April 23rd at 12.45 pm (the Queen's birthday?). I have attached his flyer, saved down as a pdf - there are some interesting historical pictures.

    As a taster here is Ian Townson's picture of the 121 Anarchist Collective After (eviction) party, which he dates to 1999.
    121 Anarchist centre final party and eviction-1999.jpg

    Attached Files:

  25. Puddy_Tat

    Puddy_Tat meh

    it's a 1958 Austin 101 / J type van (the Austin version was a 'badge engineered' Morris) - according to DVLA info, it's currently on 'SORN' so still out there somewhere
    editor and CH1 like this.
  26. Dominic Bilton

    Dominic Bilton New Member


    I'm doing a project for University about Pearl Alcocks Shabeen and the memories of people that went into it!

    Reading the stories and the history of queer Brixton in the 70's, I feel like i really missed out on something really amazing both socially in the squats and politically in the activism.

    I don't know much about Pearl, or even have a picture of the Shabeen or her as a person, so if anyone does and would like to share with me, I would be really really grateful:) I would love to hear your stories of going down there!

    My email is: or if you want to share with me here, I would be really grateful.

    friendofdorothy likes this.
  27. friendofdorothy

    friendofdorothy it is so much worse than Thatcherism now

    share with us what you know. How have you heard about Pearls Shabeen?

    Ian Townson pointed it out on his tour and regaled us with a few good tales about Pearl.

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