February 2021 is LGBT+ History Month which is a celebration of LGBT+ history that takes place each year to mark the anniversary of the abolition of Section 28 in the UK.

LGBT+ History Month is an opportunity to celebrate the contributions of LGBT+ activists, and reflect on the marginalised voices from our history and culture.

This year, the national theme is ‘Body, Mind and Soul’, while LGBT Youth Scotland’s theme is ‘unsung people’. Their events will focus on the most underrepresented people within the community, for example LGBT+ people of colour, disabled LGBT+ people, transgender people and women/womxn.

GCU’s Student Wellbeing Team, in collaboration with our LGBT+ Staff network, have been working on a new LGBT+ History web page (this page you're on!) Below you can find out more information about events throughout the month as well as information about historical figures, and links to LGBT+ research from GCU. 

Here at GCU we pride ourselves on being an inclusive and supportive community. Throughout LGBT History Month we will be highlighting supports and resources for LGBT+ students and staff which can be found via the links below: 

Students: GCU LGBT+ Student Webpages 


Purple Friday with GCU Wellbeing

Purple Friday is an annual campaign for LGBT+ Youth Scotland which is usually the last friday of LGBT+ History Month. This year the GCU Wellbeing Team raised £329.80 for LGBT+ Youth Scotland! Find out more about our annual LGBT+ History Month activities at our webpage



Online Events and Activities

We are very excited about the diverse programme of events taking place across the month, including LGBT Youth Scotland’s events and the OUTing the Past programme.

In partnership with the Students’ Association, GCU will be celebrating LGBT+ Month with a programme of events, including webinars, talks and panel discussions, as well as the Students’ Association LGBT+ Society’s annual Glitter Ball – keep an eye on this LGBT History page and social media pages for updates: @gcuwellbeing and @gcustudents

External Events: 1st - 7th of Feb

Thursday the 4th Feb at 6:30 - 8pm: Staying Connected in a Disconnected Time 


Friday the 5th of Feb at 1pm: Goma At 25: A Short Introduction To The History Of LGBTQ+ Programming At Goma 

Join Producer Curator Katie Bruce for an online presentation and conversation on the history of LGBTQ+ programming at GoMA since the museum opened in 1996.


Friday the 5th of Feb at 5pm: Virtual Queer History Tour and Badge Workshop


Saturday the 6th Feb at 9:50am: OUTing the Past: Leeds Event Programme - A webinar hosted by Leeds Art Gallery

Includes talks on:
• Asexuality
• LGBT + Health in the NHS
• Being Transgender
• LGBQ+ in the Natural World
• Queerness as a Commonwealth Immigrant
• Kilnainham Gaol Prison’s role in Ireland’s gay scandal
• Queer participatory visibility in Nigerian nations.
• Michael Dillon – Key figure in trans history


External Events: 8th - 14th of Feb

Wednesday the 9th of Feb at 5pm: LGBT+ History Month - Dr Molly Merryman, 'Queer Voices from the Pandemic'


Wednesday the 10th of Feb at 5pm: The Log Books: Stories from Queer History

IHS Markit invite you to an evening with the producers of a podcast made using a unique archive of the LGBTQ+ switchboard helpline.

Their aim was to tell the stories in the log books and bring them back to life through the memories of people who lived this queer history.

The Log Books Podcast. 


Wednesday the 10th of Feb at 6:30pm: OTP 2021 Programme - Royal museums Greenwich 

This year for OUTing the Past we will be discussing the experiences of non-western LGBTQIA+ communities, with a focus on migration, the effects of empire and global activism.

Speakers include:

  • Laila El-Metoui (Stonewall’s Lesbian Role Model of the Year) - Queering ESOL
  • Mandla Rae - Category Mistake
  • David Ikpo - Queer Participatory Visibility in Nigerian Nations
  • Jenny White and Maggy Moyo - Migration, Race and Empire: LGBTQ+ History Tour

Greenwich Museum will also be offering lots of family-friendly activities.


Thursday the 11th of Feb at 6pm: OTP – People’s History Museum 

The event will focus on how migration has influenced LGBT+ history and the fight for LGBT+ rights in the UK, and across the world.

The evening will include a tour of PHM’s galleries and collections, with Maggy Moyo and Jenny White along with presentations from Youcef Hadjazi and Mandla Rae exploring their personal experiences and the dynamics of migration, race and empire.

Suitable for ages 18+


External Events: 15th - 21st of Feb

Thursday the 16th of Feb at 4:30pm: We Love LGBT History (Live Q&A Session) 

How much do you know about Scotland's queer past?

Historic Environment Scotland are joined by historians Dr Amy Tooth Murphy from Royal Holloway, University of London, and Dr Jeff Meek from the University of Glasgow. So get comfy and settle in for some of the unheard histories, triumphs and tragedies of Scotland's LGBTQA+ past.

Tune into our live Q&A session via the Historic Environment Scotland Facebook page or our Youtube channel. This event will be recorded and available after the session via these channels.

To submit a question in advance for the panel, please email web@hes.scot


Wednesday the 17th of Feb at 6:30pm: U Belong Glasgow

U Belong Glasgow is a multilingual community platform that features BPOC, LGBT+ and disabled creatives, and amplifies their music, poetry, art, photography, and comedy.

U Belong always takes the initiative to feature other organisations and creative platforms at the beginning of every event. There will be a different host each month, and the event will run as the host plans it.


Thursday the 18th of Feb at 1pm: There needs to be care throughout – Trans Health

There is very limited evidence on trans people's access to sexual health services, particularly in the UK. Yet we know that globally, trans women are at higher risk of contracting HIV and are more likely to be diagnosed late. Trans people in the UK are less likely to visit a sexual health clinic than their cis counterparts and are more likely to feel worried, anxious, and embarrassed when doing so.

'There needs to be care throughout' is a peer-led project that builds on the small pool of existing research on trans people’s access to sexual health care and is the first national study of trans people’s experiences of accessing sexual health services in Scotland. The research was a partnership between Waverley Care and Scottish Trans Alliance, combining our respective expertise in sexual health and trans people’s access to health care.

Join Oceana Maund from the Scottish Trans Alliance and Kevin McConville, senior lecturer and researcher at Ninewells, for our Grand Rounds. They will talk about the project, share their results and insights, and look to the future of care for trans people.


Thursday the 18th of Feb at 6pm: The Men with the Pink Triangle

This public talk will give a broad outline of LGBTQI+ people both before and during the Nazi Holocaust of World War II. It will bring to light some of their stories, experiences and lived horrors. It will discuss how the persecution of predominantly gay and bisexual men, by mechanisms of Nazi Germany, took place and how this happened. However, in light of events happening in Chechnya right now, of LGBTQI+ people currently being rounded up in camps, this talk reflects upon how history is managing to repeat itself in new but frightening ways. This talk will end by asking you: what can we do to stop it?

This public talk is ideal for those who know little to nothing about the pink triangles history.
(Trigger warning - some of the stories in this public talk are upsetting)


Thursday the 18th of Feb at 6pm: OUTing the Past - Suffolk

Includes these talks:

  • Sue Sanders – CO-Founder of LGBT History month in the UK - ‘The History Of LGBT history month’
  • LGBT+ Poet Laureate Trudy Howson - ‘An LGBT Life. How it was. How it is’
  • Clifford Williams- ‘Courage to be: Organised Gay Youth in England 1970-1990.
  • Veronica McKenzie ‘Uncovering the histories of Black and Asian LGBTQ+ communities through the Haringey Vanguard project.’

Friday the 19th of Feb at 10am: OUTing the past Festival - Norfolk Ancient House


  • Homosexuality in Ancient China - Landy Wells
  • Regard: 30 years of campaigning for equality by LGBTQI+ Disabled People - Dr Ju Gosling
  • Ukrainian lesbian history of the 90s and 2000s - Kateryna Semchuk
  • BONA! A History of Polari - Ian Nipper
  • Yes, Asexuality Does Exist – Bethan Rees
  • Trans Lives in British History - Rico Chace(tbc)
  • Before the act - the night the stars came out against section 28 – Bev Ayre (tbc)
  • Negotiating Queerness as a Commonwealth Immigrant - Ibitsam Ahmed (tbc)


Friday the 19th of Feb at 7:30pm: I Have A Que(E)Ry About LGBT+ Disabled Representation

Positive Change Arts Projects present an event for LGBT+ History Month.

Join members of Saturday Socials with the support of the Equality Network and LGBT Youth Scotland, for an online panel event exploring the media representation of LGBT+ Disabled people and their communities. We are excited to be joined by poet Jay Whittaker who will be opening the event with a poetry reading.

Saturday Socials is a weekly online social gathering for Disabled and Chronically Ill LGBT+ people and allies of LGBT+ communities.

This event will be held on Zoom.

Access info: BSL interpreters.
Any que(e)ries, email Kez at positivechange@live.com


Saturday the 20th of Feb: The Higgins Bedford  OUTing the Past Festival 

With a range of dynamic speakers and presentations, our OUTing the Past Festival aims to share the hidden histories and stories of the LGBT+ community, celebrate its diversity, and raise awareness of the challenges that the community have encountered and continue to face today.

The programme includes:

  • LGBT+ and Health & the NHS by Abtin Sadeghi
  • 30 years campaigning for equality by LGBTQI+ disabled people (Disability) by Ju Gosling
  • Uncovering the histories of black and Asian communities through the Haringey Vanguard project by Veronica McKenzie
  • The Boy and The Bear Q&A by Rose Collis
  • Trans Lives in British History by Rico Chace
  • Courage to be: Organised gay youth in England 1970 – 1990 by Clifford Williams
  • How My Spirit Sought Hers by Jane Hoy

 Saturday the 20th of Feb at 6pm: Pride and Protest Watch Party on Zoom

Pride & Protest is a documentary about QTIPOC communities and activists in Britain today and struggles surrounding the politics of desire, self-care, and found family. In the wake of the Birmingham protests against LGBTIQ+ relationship education in primary schools, director Blaise Singh follows various queer people of colour as they challenge homophobia and racism in their communities. They speak out against internalised shame and lack of representation, and we follow them trying to figure out their place in the world in the build up to UK Black Pride.

The film will screen on Zoom as a live watch party followed by a Q&A with director Blaise Singh and other members of the cast and crew. We will send out a Zoom link for the event to ticket holders on the day.

The film is English language with captions and the Q&A will have live captions available. If you have any other access requests for this event, please get in touch by emailing info@sqiff.org

Content notes: Discussion of racism, homophobia, biphobia, and transphobia; depiction of homophobia, transphobia, biphobia, and brief racist violence.

This event is a ‘Pay What You Can’ event – come for free or pay what you can.

Rated 12A


External Events: 22nd - 28th of Feb


Tuesday the 23rd of Feb: OTP 2021 Programme - Leicester LGBT Centre

A dynamic evening with a diverse range of presentations, enlightening people about different LGBT+ experiences, events, and issues throughout the years, and encouraging people to be activists in the local community.

Event Programme includes:

  • Jo Somerset: 'Morley Clarke' - H. Morley Clarke (1915-2007)
  • Dr Ju Gosling: 'Regard: 30 years of campaigning for equality by LGBTQI+ Disabled People ' –
  • Rico Jacob Chace: 'Trans Lives in British History'



 Wednesday the 24th of Feb at 8pm: OTP 2021 Hub Programme - Bishopsgate Institute

Join us online to hear from speakers on a range of LGBTQ+ subjects, including the contested history of the Gay Liberation Front, and an oral testimony about being transgender.

Speakers include:

  • Lisa Power 
  • Katie Robinson 
  • Dr Ju Gosling FRSA 
  • Bethan Rees 



Thursday the 25th of Feb at 1pm: Blood Transfusion: Where Are We Now?

Join consultant Dr Katie Hands of the Scottish Blood Transfusion Service introduced by Dr Kevin McConville of the University of Dundee. Dr Hands will be looking at the changes that will be happening in the service in summer 2021.

Since the 1980s and the HIV/AIDS epidemic, gay men’s blood has been treated differently. For many decades, countries around the world banned men who have sex with men from donating for life. This brought up a huge range of issues and challenges. In the UK, it took until 2011 for these restrictions to begin being lifted. In 2020, Scotland took the lead in the UK, announcing individual risk assessments rather than dealing with whole demographic groups as a monolith.

What does this mean for the Scottish Blood Transfusion Service? And is this an issue that only affects gay men, or does it extend to other members of the LGBT+ community? We’ll answer these questions and more at what is sure to be a fascinating talk.


Thursday the 25th of Feb at 6pm: OTP 2021 Programme - London School Of Economics

In this online event Emma Jones, Norena Shopland and Ju Gosling share how LGBTQIA people in the past have been supported and lived through networks.


Thursday the 25th: LGBTQ+ Thought Leaders: Transforming Higher Education productive places?

What should a 'good university' look like? How can our traditional institutions be more engaging and more productive places?

To mark LGBT History Month 2021, SONET, LSBU, and Unison are proud to present a series of public online events from international thought leaders representing the LGBTQ+ community.


Raewyn Connell (she/her), is a long-time activist for change in education, including in universities. In her writing, she explores the 'crisis of sustainability' facing universities in the modern Higher Education sector and asks us to consider what a 'good university' should look like and do?


Saturday the 27th of Feb at 12:45pm: OTP 2021 Programme - Stockport

Now in our 4th year Stockport Libraries OUTing the Past festival to Stockport Central Library and partners have provided a wide range of accessible and diverse LGBT+ themed online events during the whole of February to celebrate & support LGBT+ Month.


Programme includes:

Veronica McKenzie

  • The Haringey Vanguard Project

 Uncovering the histories of Black & Asian LGBTQ+ communities

  • Abtin Sadeghi FRCA MB BChir MA (Cantab) 
  • Chelsea and Westminster Hospital 
  • LGBT+ Health & the NHS

 Trudy Howson: LGBT+ Poet Laureate

  •  An LGBT Life. How it was. How it is! 


Friday the 28th of FebPurple Friday 

On the last Friday of February, LGBT Youth Scotland celebrate Purple Friday: our annual fundraising day.

It plays an integral part in our ability to keep our youth work services running, now more so than ever. It’s all about taking action; standing up against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia, and helping us make Scotland the best place for LGBTI young people to grow up.


LGBT Inclusion and Support at GCU

LGBT+ Information and Support within GCU

GCU Student Wellbeing Service: 

The Student Wellbeing Service includes the Disability Team, Counselling Team, the Mental Health Adviser Team and the Student Wellbeing Adviser. If you are unsure about what would be the right support for you, you can speak to the Student Wellbeing Adviser who can help you identify the most suitable support.
Counselling Service: 

The Counselling team can offer you up to six sessions of counselling therapy to help you overcome any barriers you are facing. 

GCU Wellbeing’s Self-Help Resources:

The GCU wellbeing team have pulled together a range of resources for GCU students including our GCU Learn Community, resource list and link to sign up to newsletter.
Support for Student Cares, Care Experienced and Estranged Students:

The Student Wellbeing Adviser also works closely with student carers, and understands there can be specific barriers for LGBT+ carers in terms of accessing supports and social opportunities. GCU also support students who are Care-experienced and Estranged.

Discrimination, bullying and harassment:

If you have experienced discrimination, bullying or harassment, the Student Advice Centre can support and advise you on your options under the relevant complaints procedure in confidence. Your adviser will not take any actions or pass on any information you share without your express consent to do so. If you would prefer to speak to Christina initially, she can support you to access the relevant supports.

Gender-based Violence:

GCU’s First Responder Team includes staff members from across the university who are trained in responding to disclosures relating to gender-based violence. You can contact a First Responder directly, or you can speak to the Student Wellbeing Adviser initially and she can help you access this support.

If you would prefer to speak to a specialist LGBT+ organisation, our Gender based violence page includes a link to GALOP - Galop continues to provide Hate Crime, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence support services to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans + victims/survivors by telephone, email, text and WhatsApp. 
LGBT Society at the Students’ Association:

The LGBT+ Group is very active and offers lots of social opportunities. The Student Wellbeing Adviser can support you to link in with the LGBT+ Society, or any of the societies within the Students’ Association if you are feeling anxious.
Activism/Increasing Visibility:

The Student Wellbeing Adviser, Christina, works alongside LGBT champions within the university and Students’ Association who work to increase visibility and celebrate events such as LGBT History Month and Trans Day of Visibility. Let Christina know if you have any ideas/suggestions to help increase visibility and celebrate LGBT+ history and identities.

Trans Student Policy and Guidance

Transgender students are recognised and supported within GCU policy. We use the term transgender/trans as an umbrella term that is inclusive of gender diverse/gender non-conforming and non-binary students.

GCU have created a Trans Student Support Policy and a named contact person who can support gender diverse students throughout their time at GCU. Please see below for further resources, alongside our Guidance for Transgender Students and Guidance for Staff Supporting Transgender Students.


GCU Trans Awareness Sessions

GCU's named contact for support for gender diverse students, Christina Kelly, will be offering Trans Awareness Sessions in the upcoming trimester. To register interest in attending these sessions please sign up at out Eventbrite.

GCU's LGBT Student Support Webpage

Find further information about available contextualised support for GCU students at our GCU LGBT+ Students Webpage.

GCU's LGBT+ Research

GCU's LGBT+ Research

GCU's Professor Carol Emslie, Ms Jemma C. Lennox and Dr Lana Ireland have undertaken research on the impacts of alcohol on LGBTQ+ communities in Scotland. The research has also fed into the #KinderStrongerBetter campaign which highlights issues of substance use among LGBTQ+ people in Scotland and signposts to useful resources. 


GCU's Mel McKenna in partnership with Strathclyde's Stephanie Mckendry have contibuted to Advance HE's The Hidden Curriculum of Higher Education with their paper 'Is the hidden curriculum binary?'. 


With colleagues at the University of Pittsburgh, GCU’s Professor Simon Hunter has been involved in the development of a game to improve help seeking and coping among young people who identify as a sexual and/or gender minority, with a particular focus on their experiences of bullying. A protocol paper has been published describing the game and ongoing evaluation. A qualitative exploration of these experiences has also been accepted for publication


GCU Staff and Students are also able to access a variety of research through GCU's Sir Alex Fergusen Library. Alongside hundreds of results for LGBT resources, individuals are able to access specifically the journals relating to LGBT support and academic at the Browzine webpages.


GCU’s Dr Chris Hand, with colleagues from the University of the West of Scotland, found that full-time students were unable to maintain physical activity levels during lockdown, and that physical activity decline was linked to negative mood. The open-access paper is available here.

Higher Education Sector Resources


For further information about supporting transgender students in Higher Education, please refer to the TransEdu materials created by University of Strathclyde.

TransEdu have also recently published additional guidance for supporting students in online learning environments called: Covid-19: Supporting Transgender, non-binary and gender diverse learners in an online context.


Advance HE

Advance HE have a series of Guidance and Resources for HE and colleges.

Advance HE have also produced a publication exploring the impact of the Hidden Curriculum, including a chapter on the binary nature of the curriculum.


Gendered Intelligence

Gendered Intelligence have published Achieving Trans Inclusion & Valuing Gender Diversity in Educational Settings

History Month Information

LGBT+ History Month Icons


Stonewall have produced this guide specifically for BAME and POC LGBT communities, and have published a resource acknowledging and celebrating the thousands of historic contributions that Black LGBTQ individuals have made throughout history, paving the way not only for LGBTQ PoC but the LGBT community overall. See more at their Black History Month Heroes webpage. 


Marsha P Johnson 

Marsha P. Johnson was an activist, self-identified drag queen, performer, and survivor. She was a prominent figure in the Stonewall uprising of 1969. Learn more about her story at the Marsha P Johnson Institute webpages.


Diversity Role Models

Diversity Role Models is an LGBT+ storytelling video resource who have released the first six stories from some of their inspiring role models.