where to, now the sequins have gone?

Avant-Gardening’s Bijou Stories project is delighted to have been selected for ‘In Living Memory’, a Lewisham Borough of Culture 2022 heritage initiative, in partnership with Goldsmiths.

In Living Memory celebrates Lewisham’s diversity and heritage for London Borough of Culture 2022. It empowers Lewisham’s communities to tell their own stories, presenting them through traditional means as well as artistic and cultural activities and events.

Seven community-led projects selected from around 70 expressions of interest will be supported to undertake primary research into their chosen topic, gathering the memories of local people and sharing them through striking cultural activities that unfold across 2022.

Where to, now that the sequins have gone? by Bijou Stories

This project will uncover the histories of Lewisham’s lost gay venues that thrived from the 1970s – 90s by gathering the memories and stories of the people who created informal communities responding to social and political challenges, the AIDS crisis and other issues that affected the LGBTQ+ in the borough. It will explore different generations’ perceptions around gentrification and the loss of these physical queer spaces.

Did you used to drink in The Castle, Goldsmiths Tavern or Queens Arms? Did an evening in the pub stretch out to a late night at the Roebuck or the Arizona in Catford? We would love to hear from you. You can submit an outline of your memories through the In Living Memory website or contact Bijou Stories directly at stories@avantgardening.info

Throughout the project we will be bringing the stories out into public spaces and working with LGBTQ+ organisations in the borough to start an inter-generational dialogue.