First post

Chris Gull outside in the sunshine

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The first blog, on a new website, for a new project… I’d like to say that this is the culmination of years of work, but it’s just the culmination of the first bit of the project, acquiring the lease.

The Los Angeles LGBT Center - a large square building with coloured banners outside.

The idea of an LGBTQ+ community centre is not new, the Los Angeles Centre for instance celebrated its 50th anniversary this year, and the benefits that such a centre could bring to our Brighton & Hove communities were identified in the Count Me In Too research in the early days of the 21st Century.

So there have been years of work, mainly around finding and securing the right site, and as I write this in the first week of November, at the beginning of the second lockdown the signing of the lease seems imminent…

Having acquired an empty unit of 6,500 sq ft, we now need to know how we can best use it, and that’s where we need your help. We have an ongoing community outreach survey which we’d be grateful if you’d complete. It takes about ten minutes to complete and can be anonymous. It’s a real opportunity to be involved right from the start, and to get a chance to have input into the detail of the structure, facilities, and look of what we as a community can create.

James Ledward in front of a painting by Romany Mark Bruce

We have named the centre after James Ledward, who died last year, and who was a vital cog in many of the things that have affected, and benefitted, our local LGBTQ+ communities. He started and, until his death, edited Gscene magazine. He was behind the commissioning of TAY, the Brighton AIDS memorial, and the legacy project of The Brighton Rainbow Fund. He was also closely involved in the search for suitable premises for this centre, but of course never got to see the fruits of that involvement.

Take part in the community consultation

We’d love to hear what you want from The Ledward Centre. Our Community Consultation Survey takes about 15 minutes to fully complete.

Please feel free to contact your friends with details of the survey so that everyone has the opportunity to give their views.

For people who can’t complete the survey digitally, you can download a printable copy of the survey and send the completed form by mail to Freepost GSCENE.

The Ledward Centre Community Consultation Survey