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Southampton is a city and unitary authority in southern England, and a major seaport. It was historically within Hampshire and is still grouped with Hampshire for ceremonial purposes.
Switchboard leaflet 1982

LGBT History

Southampton CHE Group founded in October 1972 by David Porter [1] The group initially met at Porter's home, then in 1974 at the Anchor in East Street, Southampton.In 1978 the group moved to the Joiner's Arms, and in 1981 briefly to the Queen's Pub, before moving to the Magnum Club. In October 1976 they held a very successful and well attended event at the Haymarket where Quentin Crisp spoke. In 1979 Gay Solent was formed (Southampton, Winchester and Portsmouth co ordinating and producing a regular newsletter.

The CHE Conference was held in Southampton in 1976.

In about 1981 Southampton CHE established Solent Gay Switchboard. The number was Southampton 37363 and phone lines were available three times a week.
Switchboard leaflet (back)

In 1982 there was a gay disco on Sundays at Nightingales near the Bargate [2]. At that time a Gay Youth Group met in Southampton on Sunday afternoons [3].

The Edge claims to be Southampton's only gay nightclub, operating since 1995.[4]

In 2012 there was a campaign to hold a Southampton Pride[5]. Pride was held in Southampton 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Basement Boys is a group for trans men in and around Southampton.[6]


  1. Gay Solent. Newsletters of the Gay Groups of Southampton, Winchester and Portsmouth. Held in the LSE Hall Carpenter Archives Ref HCA/CHE/7/55. Issue 41 Sept 1982 has an article by Phil King 'Ten Years of Southampton CHE'
  2. Gay Solent Newsletter no 43 Nov 1982
  3. Gay Solent Newsletter no 44 Dec 1982