Lesbians versus Gay Skinheads

It could only be the 1980s!

The skinhead movement had been identified in the late 1970s and turn of the decade with the far right National Front and other neo-fascist groups. This hadn’t always been the case. In the 1960s and early 70s, it was still recognised as a Jamaican import – part of the rude boy and suede head look. But as it became associated with macho and butch violence – it somehow seemed inevitable that the gay scene would cheerfully subvert this feared fashion to its own ends. And lo it came to pass!

In the early 80s, the cowboy image was junked for knee high bovver boots, tight dyed jeans and close cropped hair. It was decided to celebrate the grown of the gay skin scene with a party at the London Lesbian and Gay Centre – a venue in Cowcross Street near Farringdon tube station that money from the GLC had set up. On the night, however, the influx of skins sent the lesbian regulars into a tizzy.

Far from welcoming the Moonstomp Disco, they yelled that the centre was being “invaded” and to defend it. Needless to say this ended in mutual recrimination. Here’s the report from the time and below – some ads for bars and clubs in the mid-80s.

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