Key Archives to Explore

The London Metropolitan Archives

The London Metropolitan Archive holds a vast collection of material about the history of London from 1067 to the present day. It is also home to an important LGBTQ+ community archive material that is shared through an ongoing programme of talks, conferences and projects, one of which is Speak Out London.

Speak Out London

Speak Out London is a LGBTQ+ community history project managed by the London Metropolitan Archives that is creating an accessible collection of oral histories, images and resources.

The National Archives

The Lesbian Archives Collection

Glasgow Women’s Library is home to one of the most significant LGBT Historical collections in the UK. With material spanning from the 1920s to the present day. The Lesbian Archives Collection includes printed material such as lesbian books, reports and theses as well as personal artefacts such as t-shirts, banners, and photographs of individual women, social events and protest marches.

The Hall-Carpenter Archives

The Hall-Carpenter Archives is held by the London School of Economics (LSE) in honour of Radclyffe Hall and Edward Carpenter, two key figures involved in the lobbying movement formed to bring about changes in the law following the publication of the Wolfenden Report in 1957. The campaign ended with the Sexual Offences Act 1967, which decriminalised homosexuality in private. The collection is particularly strong for campaigning from the late 1950s to the 1990s.

Bishopsgate Library

Bishopsgate Library at the Bishopsgate Institute holds a variety of collections relating to LGBTQ+ history, politics and culture, including around 250,000 press cuttings belonging to the Lesbian and Gay Newsmedia Archive.

The Victoria & Albert Museum

The V&A’s LGBTQ Working Group is comprised of Museum staff with an interest in using the V&A’s collections to explore issues of gender, sexuality and identity.

The group unearth previously hidden or unknown LGBTQ histories in the V&A Museum collections and aim to facilitate understanding of LGBTQ identities and histories through research, public programming, discussion and debate. The V&A run an ongoing programme of LGBTQ+ focused events throughout the year.

The British Museum

Same Sex Desire and Gender Identity explores objects in the museum’s collection that have LGBTQ+ themes, investigating different cultural norms, and periods in history.

People’s History of LGBT+ Life in Britain

Five Decades of LGBT+ life in Britain told by the people who lived it. A website developed by the BBC in collaboration with the Open University that is crowdsourcing photos, memories, film footage, historic documents, club flyers, outfits, protest banners, posters, music, diary entries and much more to help tell the story of 50 momentous years for LGBT+ people in Britain.


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