Tuesday 28 February 2017

Hundreds of people attended events last weekend to celebrate diversity in Sheffield and mark the end of this year’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) History Month.

Talks, films, music and other celebrations ran at the Millennium Gallery on Saturday and Sunday, hosted by the Friends of Edward Carpenter and local charity SAYiT.

Councillor Jack Scott, Cabinet Member of Community Services and Libraries at Sheffield City Council, spoke at the Saturday event and said: “Sheffield has a proud history of standing up for equality and fighting prejudice. The weekend events showed how much we have achieved together and also how much more there is to do.

“Sheffield City Council will always champion fairness and ensure our residents can live their lives to the full and be who they were born to be.”

The Right Honourable Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Councillor Denise Fox, also spoke at the event and said: “I was very proud to be part of the LGBT events. There was a great turn out which shows the vitality and vibrancy of Sheffield and all our communities.”

This year’s LGBT month marked the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of male homosexuality in England and Wales.

Steve Slack, CEO of SAYiT (Sheena Amos Youth Trust), said: “As CEO of the charity SAYiT, which works with young LGBT+ people, I was overwhelmed by the turn out over the weekend for LGBT history month celebrations.

“This year was particularly pertinent because we were celebrating the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of male homosexuality. This was one of the biggest history month events we have ever put on and as ever the people of Sheffield – gay and heterosexual, young and old – turned out in their hundreds.

“We were grateful to the Friends Of Edward Carpenter, Sheffield City Council and to the Big Lottery Fund whose support allowed us to celebrate, educate and commemorate. The celebrations ended with a film made by young people in conjunction with E.D.E.N. Productions which was a huge success. The film documents the experiences of older people growing up in an era when homosexuality was less acceptable than it is now. It also reminded us that whilst equality and rights can be won they can also be lost. We have already been approached to show it at an international women’s Festival in Greece.”