Shore Leave

LGBTQ+ History Month February 2022

For LGBTQ+ History month Bijou Stories will be exploring the liminal space between land and sea, a dreamlike world of mystery and liberation, where new identities are explored and the mythology of the sea crashes into the land.

We will be celebrating the queerness of the sea with a programme of films and activities during LGBTQ+ History month.

Fisch performs Handsome Cabin Boy

Out At Sea

Saturday 19th February at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich.

Join us for an alternative tour of the museum’s collection as we look for suggestions of queerness and the mysterious on a tour led by the enigmatic Siren of the Sea – a living masthead with a penchant for the far-fetched and bizarre.

Wig Out! is back. Prior to taking the tour you will have the opportunity to design your own cardboard wig and enjoy a story from The Nightbus.

Here Be Monsters. Join in with a fun workshop to create a map of strange new worlds.

Fierce Queens

Friday 25th February at The Queens House, Greenwich.

In between the performances of Fierce Queens in The Queens House join Divine III and Penny Rigate as they offer a chance to relive a couple of popular activities from their days as Carny Queens of the cities by the sea.

Shore Leave Film Night

Thursday 24th February at 6.30pm. Bathway Theatre, Woolwich

Book your FREE tickets here.

This film screening brings together two examples of queer filmmakers producing hallucinatory visions set during Shore Leave, in works where fights become choreographed dances and the surreal lies just beneath the surface.


Querelle, the sailor, is on shore leave in a highly stylised version of the French port town of Brest, where he becomes entangled in a web of violence and eroticism.  The final film by prolific German director, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, who died aged 37, is a dream-like vision of a twilight hinterland inhabited by hunky sailors, mysticism and the self-destruction that Fassbinder himself experienced. (in German, French and English, with subtitles)

104 mins.18 rating


A ground-breaking piece of queer and underground cinema explores the same themes as Querelle as a dreamer encounters a group of sailors on shore leave. A classic short film by director, gossipmonger, occultist and provocateur, Kenneth Anger.

15 minutes, 18 rating

Hello Sailor!

Night Tide

Gay filmmaker and occultist, Curtis Harrington explores the world of sailors and sea mythology in the wonderful Night Tide. You can watch the film, beautifully restored, on the fantastic cult movie website which showcases the work done by Nicolas Winding Refn to preserve and contextualise genre and exploitation movies.

Night Tide on ByNWR