A protest organised by parts of London's queer clubbing community is to take place outside Tower Hamlets Town Hall next week, under the banner of saving queer and kink spaces.
Scheduled for Tuesday, 26th July, at 6pm, the protest is being organised in response to attempts by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, in East London, to impose a no-nudity and no-semi-nudity restriction on the club E1, which sometimes hosts queer and kink-friendly events.
LGBTQ+ promoter Klub Verboten is leading the protest, and wrote on an event page about it: "We are calling on everyone who belongs to kink, leather and BDSM communities to attend and show their solidarity. After the closure of the Backstreet, this will be the second safe space lost in Tower Hamlets.
"The council is relying on outdated and moralist views without any regard for diversity and inclusivity in the night-time economy. It potentially concerns all the LGBTQI+-centered venues and events, and the present and future kink-friendly and sex-positive spaces, across the UK."
The promoter's note about the protest continued: "The council is wrongly trying to conflate two separate legal regimes, that of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 and the Licensing Act 2003, in an effort to limit personal freedom and expression. These legal principles are dated and rooted in unequal binary categories. Tower Hamlets Council is trying to force its judgmentalism on club operators and promoters, forcing them to police gender and sexuality on consenting adults."
Klub Verboten has also criticised Tower Hamlets' council's decision to use taxpayers' money on hiring an external legal advisor for a hearing about imposing rules on E1 and other venues in its jurisdiction. The promoter said "this is money that could have been better spent in the borough".
Find out more about the protest via an event listing here.
The legal battle between Tower Hamlets Council and queer, kink-friendly promoters like Klub Verboten and Crossbreed, as well as E1, dates back to earlier this year when the local council made an initial attempt to shut down such events in the area.