LGBTory

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LGBTory
The LGBTory Rainbow Tree Logo
The LGBTory Logo
Motto "The LGBT Conservative Group"
Formation 2006
Type LGBT, Conservative
Purpose LGBT Rights and Conservative Principles
Location
Region served United Kingdom
National Chairman Colm Howard-Lloyd
Main organ National Officers Executive[1]
Affiliations Conservative Party
Website http://www.LGBTory.co.uk/

LGBTory is an LGBT and Conservative group linked to, but not run, directed or funded by the Conservative Party of the United Kingdom. The first LGBT Conservative group was called CGHE (Conservative Group for Homosexual Equality). It was founded in 1975 by Professor Peter Campbell of Reading University. That group was reconstituted at the Conservative Party Conference in 1991 and was renamed TORCHE (the Tory Campaign for Homosexual Equality) under the chairmanship of David Starkey.[2] This group was active until c.2003. and some years later LGBTory[3] was formed. LGBTory has an active membership organised often organised using its Facebook Groups and pages and attends vigils and LGBT Pride events across the UK including Pride London,[4] Pride Scotia, Leeds Pride,[5][6] Manchester Pride,[7] Doncaster Pride, Edinburgh Pride, Glasgow Pride, Liverpool Pride, Cardiff Pride, Reading Pride and Brighton Pride.[8][9]

LGBTory campaigned in seats throughout the campaign for the 6th May 2010 General Election, there are now at least 14 openly Gay and Lesbian Conservative MP's in parliament,[10][11] more than all the other parties in the House of Commons put together, this includes a former Vice-Chairman of the Conservative Party Margot James who is only the second openly lesbian in parliament.[12]

LGBTory works to promote LGBT Equality within the Conservative Party[13][14][15] and generally across the UK, actively campaigning against the Gay Blood Ban[16] and for marriage equality, regardless of sexuality or gender identity.[17]

Name[edit]

The name LGBTory came under scrutiny when members of the Trans community felt that it was missing the letter T and actually read LGB-Tory rather than the play on words and correct LGBT-ory. Then Chairman Matthew Sephton pointed out during an interview on a local Manchester BBC radio show that this was not the case and that the organisation does indeed have Trans members. He further claimed that the name of the Liberal Democrats' LGBT organisation, Delga,[18] made no attempt to refer to the Trans community nor the bisexual community.

Chairmanship[edit]

The first LGBTory logo.

The founder and first official chairman of LGBTory was Anastasia Beaumont-Bott[19] and it was under her Chairmanship that Mayor of London Boris Johnson attended and led the London Pride March in 2008.[20] Beaumont-Bott later defected to Labour following Chris Grayling's controversial comments about gay couples in B&Bs but subsequently quit politics.[21]

The second chairman of LGBTory was Edward Butler-Ellis; under his chairmanship official membership was founded to the organisation, and this led to a massive understanding about the LGBT Community's part within the Conservative Party.

LGBTory National Chairman 2009-2014 Matthew Sephton.

The next Chairman of LGBTory was Matthew Sephton, who served 2009-2014;[22] under his leadership LGBTory expanded with the organisation attending more pride events than ever. Sephton was often in the Pink Media[23] as a voice for the Conservatives within the gay community.

In January 2014, Colm Howard-Lloyd took over as LGBTory Chairman.

LGBTory events[edit]

LGBTory is present at social meet ups, meals and drinks, Gay Pride events, and HIV vigils across the country.[24] Each year LGBTory hold a drinks reception at Conservative Spring Forum and at Conservative Party Conference they host 'Conference Pride', hold a joint fringe event with Stonewall, have events for Parliamentarians and hold member exclusive events such as meals. In addition LGBTory host many fundraising events across the UK, Parliamentary receptions in The Palace of Westminster for members of both the House of Lords and House of Commons, and organise campaign days to support candidates. LGBTory officers also represent the organisation at David Cameron's LGBT Downing Street garden reception.

Conference Pride[edit]

LGBTory members at Pride London 2011.
The Conference Pride logo.

Tuesday 6 October 2009 during Conservative Party Conference saw LGBTory host'Conference Pride'[25][26] in Manchester. Conference Pride was held in SPIRIT nightclub on Manchester's Canal Street[27] with a live performance from Angie Brown[28] and a free cocktail on the door. Tickets at the cost of £15[27] were available both on the internet and at the Party Conference ticket booth. The event started at 2130 and finished at 0300 the next morning. Conference Pride sold filled the capacity of the nightclub and was attended by several high profile Members of Parliament and Conservatives. The event also had extremist anti-gay Christian groups protesting outside as well as an anti-Conservative Party protest group which consisted of the Queer Youth Network and Reclaim the Scene as well as other anti-Tory individuals.[29][30] Conference Pride has continued to be a prominent event ever since 2009, being held each year at LGBT locations across both Manchester and Birmingham.

LGBTory campaigns[edit]

LGBTory are continuously lobbying on LGBT issues and have contacted every single Conservative MP on several occasions since 2010 General Election. The organisation supports the governments plans for marriage equalisation and further supports the government on several policies that effect LGBT individuals. The organisation has a strong working relationship with several Minsters, MPs, Members of the House of Lords and government ministries.

Patrons[edit]

LGBTory has several high profile patrons.[31] These are currently:

Equal Marriage Bill[edit]

LGBTory has been at the heart of the organisation of the tabling and passage of the Marriage (same sex couples) Bill passed all readings in Parliament and became law in 2014 when the first equal marriages took place in England and Wales.

The debate was opened by Equalities Minister Maria Miller.[32] The first LGBTory patron to take part in the debate was the Rt Hon Nick Herbert MP. In his speech he talked of same-sex couples wishing to show commitment to each other.[33] Following in Nick's footsteps, another LGBTory patron, Margot James MP spoke on how far the Conservative Party has come to be putting forward such legislation as this.[34] Next, Mike Freer MP pointed out that some of the contributions to debate against the Bill that day had been hurtful and that all LGBT people are asking for is equal treatment. When Stuart Andrew MP stood up to speak, he focused on wishing to protect religious freedom and expressed his view that same-sex marriage will strengthen, not diminish this institution.[35] When Eric Ollerenshaw OBE MP got to his feet, he too was concerned about religious freedom and said that his support for the Bill came from a wish to see ALL religious freedom protected, not just that of the more powerful or established churches.[36] Crispin Blunt MP then spoke about how, over time, barriers have been overcome for LGBT people and that this is just the latest.[37] When Iain Stewart MP got up to speak, it had nearly all been said. Stewart is a former Deputy Chairman of LGBTory, and so his words mean a lot to the LGBTory group. When he spoke, he talked about his experience of coming out all those years ago and said that he would "go through the aye lobby with pride".[38]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Officers | LGBTory | The Conservative LGBT Group". LGBTory. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  2. ^ http://www.torche.gb.org/
  3. ^ "The Conservative LGBT Group". LGBTory. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  4. ^ Pride London Blog - Anastasia Beaumont-Bott LGBTory[dead link]
  5. ^ Writer, Staff. "Gay MP speaks at Leeds Pride". PinkNews.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-01-28. 
  6. ^ James Sanders (2010-08-03). "Conservative MP leads LGBTory march at Leeds Pride parade". News.pinkpaper.com. Archived from the original on 11 July 2012. 
  7. ^ Dunning, Joanne (2009-09-02). "The Lesbian & Gay Foundation " Manchester Pride gets political!". Lgf.org.uk. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  8. ^ "Tories to parade themselves at Brighton Pride - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2008-08-01. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  9. ^ "ConservativeHome's Seats & Candidates blog: "We're here, we're queer and we're going to vote Conservative!"". Conservativehome.blogs.com. 2008-08-08. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  10. ^ "Elected LGBT Conservatives | LGBTory | The Conservative LGBT Group". LGBTory. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  11. ^ "Updated: Out gay Tory shadow ministers retain seats - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2010-05-07. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  12. ^ "Margot James becomes the second out lesbian in parliament - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2010-05-07. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  13. ^ "The gay highs and lows of 2009 - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2009-12-30. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  14. ^ "Cameron praises civil partnerships but prepares to put Iain Duncan Smith in charge of families - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2009-10-08. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  15. ^ "Tory LGBT group calls for ‘official reprimand’ for Tory MEP who said homophobia was propaganda - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2009-08-12. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  16. ^ James Sanders (2010-09-01). "Conservative gay group launch blood ban campaign". News.pinkpaper.com. Archived from the original on 13 July 2012. Retrieved 2012-01-28. 
  17. ^ Writer, Staff. "UK gay rights groups (with one exception) set out positions on marriage equality". PinkNews.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-01-28. 
  18. ^ ""DELGA"? ("Liberal Democrats for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Action")". DELGA. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  19. ^ "Tories will walk with Boris at their first Pride London - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2008-07-04. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  20. ^ "Tories will walk with Boris at their first Pride London - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2008-07-04. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  21. ^ The Independent, 8 April 2010, I'm voting Labour, founder of Tory gay rights group says
  22. ^ "ConservativeHome's Seats & Candidates blog: Matthew Sephton selected to take on Hazel Blears in Salford and Eccles". Conservativehome.blogs.com. 2009-12-06. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  23. ^ "The Lesbian & Gay Foundation " LGBTory's Matt Sephton on the Conservatives "huge progress"". Lgf.org.uk. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  24. ^ "Conservative gay group launched at Manchester Pride - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2009-09-01. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  25. ^ http://conservativehome.blogs.com/files/060_946_boyz_bulletin2.pdf
  26. ^ "First official gay Tory party hailed a success despite Stonewall boycott - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2009-10-07. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  27. ^ a b "Conservative Conference ‘Gay Pride’ party". TrueBlueBlood. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  28. ^ "Tory logo turns rainbow in attempt to win the gay vote | Mail Online". Dailymail.co.uk. 2009-08-28. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  29. ^ "Gay Tory group’s anger over ‘Shame’ nightclub - from Pink News - all the latest gay news from the gay community". Pink News. 2009-10-06. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  30. ^ "Protests dent Tory gay pride in Manchester - from Lesbilicious blog - "the web's tastiest lesbian magazine"". 2009-07-10. Retrieved 2010-10-13. 
  31. ^ "http://www.LGBTory.co.uk/people/40"
  32. ^ Her full statement can be read here
  33. ^ lgbtory.co.uk
  34. ^ www.lgbtory.co.uk
  35. ^ www.lgbtory.co.uk
  36. ^ www.lgbtory.co.uk
  37. ^ www.lgbtory.co.uk
  38. ^ /www.lgbtory.co.uk

External links[edit]

LGBT Conservative groups[edit]

Official party sites[edit]

Archives[edit]