Lesbian heritage walk (Auckland)
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[00:00:00] This podcast is brought to you by the Charlotte museum trust in pride in z.com. I'm Miriam Fira, on the secretary of the Charlotte museum trust. And we're on the corner of Ponsonby road and Collingwood Street. And we're going to do the lesbian heritage walk. So we're going to head off down the road. [00:00:20] So here we are 161. [00:00:24] So during the late 80s, I think it was some know that I actually have an absolute date, but I think it was sort of 89 round, or might have been ID seven it I do not around about that time. This was 161, Ponsonby road, Lisbon bar upstairs. And that was a club that was called 11161. And it was set up by Elaine temple he had gone away originally, she and her former partner, Sharon ran the Empire hotel and it was notorious in the early 80s. And that's where red barrel played. And it was packed nights. And it was a fairly outrageous pub. But we have always had a great time. And then they split up the whole complex and sold. And of course the Alex was demolished. A lovely old [00:01:19] heritage hotel that we lost. [00:01:21] But she set up and and ran a sort of cabaret type restaurant called Kimberly's up and gray linen and [00:01:30] a motel Leah, [00:01:31] but sadly, that went broke. And several lesbians got burnt and lost money. So there was a bit of sadness and a small community. That's what happens and she went overseas. [00:01:43] Then she came back [00:01:45] after the temporary episode and say that 161, but it lasted for about nine months, or this one's very good at coming to new things. And then they fade away and go back to missing tea cozy or polishing the silver or whatever they bloody do. So that demise, maybe it was just over a year and 18 months, and then that closed. So that closed more probably for attendance and financial problems. And one of the things is that lesbians don't have a big capacity for alcohol, [00:02:20] we tend to fall over if we drink too much. And so [00:02:24] raising money through alcohol to pay the rent is always tricky for lesbians. And it's always been a problem because we've always had to get the money to pay the rent. So we've always sold our home. But in the 70s with the K g club, we couldn't get a license because no woman could get a license to sell alcohol. So of course, the police would ride out. So Beach Road was probably the most notorious kg club that we will be going and seeing as we go along our walk the very first tues places where the kg club began. And so I'll talk a [00:02:59] bit more about the kg club. [00:03:00] But just to give you a bit of a background about why it was so difficult for lesbians to get together. There was also an enormous amount of discrimination. And some of you might not realize that lesbian ism was considered a mental illness up until 1973. Now you cannot change the conscious mind overnight. So that was still doing nasty treatments in the mid 70s, EC T, insulin shot, reading some of the files from Oakley shocking of what they did to women, a couple of us managed to get access to archival files for a while she had proper access was just sort of access. I didn't quite have legitimate access, but and it was interesting, the very early files in the 1900s would talk about problems of deep depression, and so on and a Manish woman or the third seek. So sometimes uranium was used, but mostly it was managed features or managed behavior was the sort of tick box, but they when treated the depression, they treated the presenting symptoms. But once you got the Second World War and the need to breed more cannon fodder, I say cynically, but the next war, then the emphasis was on, you know, that everyone needed to start having children. And so lesbianism that whole mental illness thing was emphasized. And that was the influence of the United States after the Second World War was a big, no, no to be lesbian, you needed to be breeding. And so things got much tougher, and people hospitals, they ignored presenting symptoms, and started to try to [00:04:38] change people's sexual orientation [00:04:40] with disastrous consequences. And [00:04:42] some people are still living with those consequences today. And it's very, very hard. So I think with that in mind, gives us an idea of how sort of almost like fugitives, lesbians were in the 60s and 70s, to try and get any sort of sense of community or, or meet each other, you could lose your job and all those sorts of things. [00:05:07] This was the very first Women's Center in Oakland. And while it wasn't portrayed, of course, with it [00:05:15] was about 1973 wasn't [00:05:17] portrayed as lesbian. lesbians gravitated to it any way where there were women. And so at one point, there was a great controversy because one of the women who was a very lonely lesbian, wanted to contact other women are the lesbians, and she came to the Women's Center. And when they discovered you as a police woman, I did not want her there. So this was originally it sold, secondhand stoves, and repaired stoves. And then it became the women took over. And one of the photographs here, that in your brochure is actually outside this [00:05:56] first Oakland women's center there. [00:06:00] So [00:06:02] a lot of their history is just word of mouth and not recorded. And we have struggled, trying to name people in the photographs because there were lots of pee pee schemes in those days that kept organizations running, which sadly, we don't have today. [00:06:17] And so we miss out on a lot of sort of [00:06:19] internships, so to speak. [00:06:23] So we'll walk on a second Women's Center is further up the road. And that has been revamped, but I'll point out a novella of what it looked like and tell you a little bit when we get there. We will be walking past the women's bookshop disqualifies the law on the traffic outside. The women's workshop is on our map because it has the largest collection of lesbian books and probably New Zealand if not Australasia. [00:06:54] So here's the women's bookshop, the largest collection of misery and books for sale, we've got a new lesbian novel New Zealand lesbian novel being launched. There was one last year, [00:07:05] one a year, it's pretty amazing. [00:07:07] Let's hope we can keep it up. Because overseas, I spent some time in the wintertime I go over to Europe. And it's interesting that there's not a lot of lesbian books being published in people's home countries. But I'm here It isn't the window. So I really want my child to lesbian novel as gives you a good setting of what it was like in the 60s. So it's well worth a read. Because things were difficult, and they were mostly networks, you could only and you could find one other lesbian then you could ask them to general meet up with [00:07:44] them somehow. And [00:07:46] that's how you sort of network. And school teachers did that quite a lot. school teachers and nurses were often two distinct network groups and different groups. The course when you broke up, of course, then you Welcome to Two more groups. And [00:08:04] so I think [00:08:21] now this isn't [00:08:22] number 63 number 63. This new building. So the old woman Sander number 63 was a villa a bit like this sit back from the road. It wasn't as smart as this. It was a city council building. It was in poor appear. It was damn. We had a homeless lesbian living on the veranda at one point, then she was living in the house and people couldn't get her out. And there were various controversies, but it was this was the first Women's Center where rape crisis first started, its founding, but it was really set up to go in number 63 support line for women was set up by Trish Dempsey [00:09:05] right crisis a group of women, [00:09:08] mostly lesbian set up right process. Of course, they were faced with a text by men. There's always been a text on lesbian sometimes by family members called corrective right, raping the lesbian to try and make a straight. There's always been the sort of acts of violence. I was just saying before the police will often just arrest you, if you look like two lesbians and the street. And particularly, one couple I know they got arrested a couple of times just through police harassing them until one of them last to call. They did get their own bag by stuffing the blankets down the toilet. So the sales and flooding the whole police station but so there was some lighter moments and the judge actually let them off because they could say that they were arrest in the first place. There was no need to have intervene with these two women walking down the street and allow a part of town. So having 60 at the Women's Center and having these support groups set up here [00:10:12] made a big difference because it offsets [00:10:15] the sort of drinking culture that the kg club had sort of firmly established to pay the rent and to dodge the police as they tried to close it them. Yes. The kg [00:10:26] club [00:10:27] will becoming a cow. [00:10:30] So okay, look, there's lots of argument about what kg stands for. Some of the older women always said it was stone for can girls, but it was first it up and praying every road and that's how I understood it stood for growing every girls. [00:10:48] The [00:10:48] first we [00:10:50] will come to those two buildings. I'll talk about them when we get to there. But that was set up in about 1973. And the Charlotte you is named after to the Charlotte's who were on that. First, those first committees that set up and dodged police on the one hand and angry landlords wanting over to read on the other. So it was always difficult. They had actually afraid of Sandra county used to hire out the jukebox. The jukeboxes were notorious if you could stand there trying to choose a Jew and the Cockroaches would be running over the over the titles. So one of the places the one we can walk to because there's some beach roads that far to walk today in the heat. But it had a couple of boards missing on the floor where the landlord just nailed turnover and you're dancing your head to sort of circumvent these patches on the on the floor. It was up the stairs, it was a motorbike shop down below. But it had quite a reputation of activity. But again, it was targeted by traffic for drunken driving, they would wait outside and I remember I went to pick up my girlfriend one night, I was stopped by the cops here is a sure I'd been drinking I'd had one drink. So I knew I wasn't over. And in those days, it was much more lacks than it is now. I had been working on an essay for university and I just go on about midnight to go and pick my girlfriend up who was on the committee [00:12:25] of the kg club. And [00:12:27] he went around and when he saw pro abortion sticker on my car, he kicked every tire. So I knew he was anti feminist and so on. And he dropped my keys the police argue with and when I went to get my house key office, I could see that I wasn't drunk or anything and argue with this cop but he insisted that he had the right to tear my keys taken office. So we actually got attacked by on the taxi stand that night trying to get a taxi home. I got punched in the head by three silos. But we didn't get managed to get home the next morning, I had to get my keys and I couldn't find them at the City Council. And so I described I said he's he normally rides a motorbike and he's overweight. And he's very, he's anti abortion and anti feminists, anti women, I think, [00:13:17] Oh, I know what that is. She said [00:13:19] instantly. [00:13:21] Now, [00:13:23] he'd been on not sure. So [00:13:24] she delighted and bringing him up. And the keys were in his pocket. I thought it was all a bit dodgy myself. And I that I didn't make a complaint, I worked for the Justice Department. And while they were very happy about me being in and safe places, they either didn't ever want to cause any trouble supporting five children on my own. So keeping my head down as much as I could, as much as I was able to say anyway, this next door sort of in between there was a big garden was 63. So we had in the summer, it was nice to have activities out and be some hands had picnics in the garden. And [00:14:08] and there was a support line and, and quite [00:14:10] a lot of support things [00:14:12] going on for women. It was a big move from a desert beforehand, just a woman, let alone and the lesbian sort of tried to tag on and get a few things. Okay. [00:14:27] And yes, there was [00:14:30] there was a print shop down and that put out a lesbian first of all circle came out of Wellington. And then there was I can't remember now which order they go and but they were various lesbian newsletters, there was witches, witches and direct. So very feminist one, there was direct news, there was lesbians and print that came out of the punch center that was in cinema side of the street and parallel to Nelson, Union Street. That's right, that that print shop was run by lesbians. And so we've managed to get a photograph of them at the press and put them on our we've got a media banner at the lesbian Museum, Charlotte museum. And we've managed to fit one of those pictures on amongst all the old lesbian magazines from the 20s that we found that photographed from the archives in Berlin. So sadly, New Zealand didn't seem to they was at least being [00:15:29] group [00:15:31] in the 20s and New Plymouth. I have a photograph of that simply because my mother was in there with my math teachers I'm around or I'm not [00:15:38] quite sure there's three of this. [00:15:41] One can romanticized little scars. [00:15:46] And so I have that photograph. And that was called the Tuesday club. And they used to meet at McDonald's hairdressing salon for gin and tonics on a Tuesday. So that was an early network. But we don't actually have any other information really, other than Oakland woman who's in the 80s now told me that wearing an anklet, a little chain entered on your ankle was a sign that you were interested in women showing a bit of ankle years, this was in the 20s and 30s. And it was possibly more given her background, the Dance Theatre sort of network. I'm not sure that teachers been wearing ankle so I think it was the steer across the staff room, that [00:16:35] guy's gi zero ICT, [00:16:42] which you haven't got device mentioned on our net. But I should point out that device was actually set up at the very beginning by two lesbians, very entrepreneurial, so. So it's probably worth remembering that device is here now. And it's part of our rich tapestry of history in life really. [00:17:15] Well, this is marked on your map as Western Park. And it has an interesting history, of course, we had a VIP stand on the corner of Western park with a [00:17:26] building sinking, sinking civilization [00:17:28] over there. It's all because of the hero parade, of course, [00:17:31] that those buildings have sunk into the ground. [00:17:36] So that was where the stand to see the hero parade when it started. Going down the road. Of course, most people think that was the only parades in Oakland. But we did start off having gay rights matches down Queen Street. We were much braver and bolder in the early days, I think, much more radical as we match up and down Queen Street with people throwing insults at us and so on. But we didn't care. We just not strong and we had a great solidarity, and that those early fights and then of course, the hero parade, which much more flamboyant, and people have possibly forgotten that it was really set up in a way almost to flaunt sexuality, because of the AIDS crisis. We wanted people not to be whatever they did, even if it was a bit dodgy from our point of view, whatever they did was okay, so that they would just start using condoms and be safe. And unless we could get that message across to people, we would lose lots, lots more people. And you Zealand was very lucky in the fact that Bruce Burnett came back from San Francisco early enough to set up the support network and get some of us involved. I mean, I got involved because they could use my, my degree. I hadn't finished my PhD then but I had to a diploma in clinical science and employment educational soccer, my master's, nobody else had qualification. So they needed some academic sort of stuff even though the university isn't really liked me much. Because they were frightened, not pull the blow the whistle on sexual harassment was their worry, gathered later on. And anyway, that was really the reason why those those hero parade started and why they were perhaps overly sexualized from today's point of view, but it was really, really important thing for people not to be ashamed of what they might do, wherever they might do it. We put stickers up in public toilets, and all sorts of things to try and get it across to me and for goodness sake, be say, and we made a big difference in terms of our population of HIV. And it was, yes, it was worth worth being criticized for being so out there and blatant. But people have often forgotten those earlier, not just in the earlier work that was done in terms of getting gay rights even spoken about and putting them on the map. The first meeting and Oakland on homosexual law reform was in 1969. I remember that because I was very pregnant with my son and I went along in the hope that I might meet a lesbian. And it all seemed to be do Gooding doctors, I thought, but I didn't really know what a lesbian looked like I thought they were short. But said in every man's encyclopedia that homosexuals had arrested development, that's why I thought you're sure [00:20:35] I came in the country. [00:20:35] I mean, I [00:20:38] wasn't very socialized. [00:20:41] I didn't think [00:20:42] other than what was rushing I couldn't see. It might need some [00:20:47] Well, I that's why I went to university. [00:20:52] Well, that was 69 I was doing Japanese at university I still with the short things. Yeah, there's little character, his own little dots here and there. So it was Yeah, took me a while to trudge through psychology and then I was horrified that we never all as years of study and I never got one lecture on emotions. And I started working with violent [00:21:17] offenders [00:21:18] who was all emotion up sitting angry infantry, policeman, yo, basic. Anyway, the other thing about Western park the hero Bry there, across here, our school girls holding hands, saying little niceties to one another. And nowadays they start to think early Am I am I I have the strong feeling a little crush on my best friend. in those early days, it probably didn't occur to many of us until we will much later that the crash was our first our first beginnings of love that of course, across the other side of the park is Oakland girls grammar we have a slightly bit of you a little bit further down the road. And that is course we shall nine pounds he taught. And to start with she wasn't so open. But after a disaster break up I think I'll school you more or less. And then she became much more public as being a lesbian, but she was part of the old school of teachers who could lose their job if they were discovered to be lesbian. So it was all Cloak and Dagger stuff, like impose any day she would never have I was going out to dinner with friends and we invited her in a partner. No, no, she wouldn't come because Miriam severe as they should so well known as lesbian. [00:22:39] So sometimes I missed out on dinner parties. But private parties were okay, I could listen to those. [00:22:53] Just across there is Oakland girls grammar, and this is one of their car parks. I always like to stop here, because this is such a lovely Haven, this part of wisdom pack. It's such a lovely Dell, and lots of little nooks and crannies where people can sort of lie around in the sun and talk sweet nothings to each other and so on. It's for all sexual orientations. So it's just a lovely part of the city to be so close. And I think we're very lucky to have these green spots. And it's not. There's plenty of deciduous trees, but it's not too overpopulated with what I call foreigners. You know, those European trees, I much prefer the cabbage trees and so on. And the natives, but that's just my bias. And then we'll head off as soon as we can. Across the road, they go down a little bit and then across, the two got here for straight. And then when the family guns. Now this was after the kg club got closed down in Beach Road by the police, who were very happy with themselves because they called a probation officer beyond unlicensed premises. I had only just leave so from the Justice Department if I'd stayed. But then when the trade closed down some of the committee Lyft they had been charged with selling liquor without a license and so on no fines. Nobody had excess money. We all drove old cars. There was no one very rich in that community. As I say they teach us didn't go there because they might get labeled. Occasionally feminists from broadsheet would go down the road to the kg club but always in a group effect name Hill, Kenny's coming out stories really interesting that she the first time she went to the kg club, she thought she would be pounced on. She was at university and still very virginal and only just sort of thinking you might be an ESPN. [00:25:02] So there were those sort of fees as well. [00:25:06] So anyway, a woman Diane Scott who works now in real estate, she and a group of women got to this place and rented out, it was quite a big space upstairs, you went upstairs, she got some fancy vinyl seats for I don't know where she got them from. But it was a precious place we'd ever been. And [00:25:25] it had pool tables. And [00:25:29] in fact, it was [00:25:29] one of the first times I heard of a lesbian wedding [00:25:32] was just after they set up this club, they had this amazing, elaborate wedding, I wasn't invited to it because I was seen as a bit sort of feminist and also I had all these children. And it was a grand affair, one of them wearing a sort of quite Butch and female wedding was wasn't a one woman in a bride's outfit and the other one man suit. And it was certainly talked about and everyone celebrated after was a pair of history club was here. But I believe and I can't remember how soon afterwards, but there was some trouble with money. We realize everyone was poor. And I think takings from the night, were too tempting for one woman who whipped off with all the proceeds and healing to Australia. And so that caused a big split as anyone who was still friends with her and those sort of, you know, [00:26:32] sort of goings on. [00:26:34] And so some feminists got onto the committee and thought that they were able to straighten everything out. And because of their politics, of course, it they ended up destroying the club, but without them realizing it was someone who was feeling anti men at the time, which is often women working through rape issues and sexual abuse issues, family issues, and so on, do go through a period of time where they don't wish to have anything to do with men. Now, Diane and Perth had actually cultivated the local beat cops and those days, we actually had big pops. I mean, it's unheard off today, just about so these placement walked the beat. And they get to nine and I knew they didn't have a license, but she would invite them up and even give them a drink if they were willing to have one. And because sometimes they did. I'm not saying whether on duty or not. But so she had them okay. But when the feminists took over and someone full of vitriolic about men, for whatever reason spent at them out the window, that was enough to them to society right up and which they did, and it closed down. So then it went from here to data straight to Albert Street, always for short term leases, often and financial difficulties or our emotional difficulties or growth, friendship, not necessarily relationship relationship, but friendship type difficulties working together as a group. One of the things that you notice amongst older lesbians, they're fiercely independent they've had to be to survive. And it's quite difficult. I know falling in love at 70 with another 17 year old. We are very safe in our ways from two different cultures. [00:28:26] She's a hygiene Queen and on the mysterious person. And [00:28:31] just as well, we live in two different countries. [00:28:35] But it shows that the independence it's actually quite hard to run a committee to because everybody has an idea. And they think their ideas, right. It's just a challenge to work with volunteers and so on, who have often fought and struggle. So they have quite set opinions about how things should be done. And it's good that they are solid, and in that way. So as we walk up and around the corner, and I'll just wave my hand in the direction of the dog's bollocks. That used to be footsteps, another version of the kg club after the beam today street now the street and went in between several times down a [00:29:14] road. [00:29:22] I should point out that the prostitutes collectives across there and that was set up for because of the AIDS crisis. So and they've been there a long time now for a sex but it's not on your map. It's pointed out to gain its associated. Now we're coming down to 485, which is actually quite difficult to find. I've always struggled to find this building I never seem to remember once I do find it, I lose it again. But it was a broadsheet office, and Cameron Carol, the opera singer used to live upstairs in one place. And Jenny Rankin from the Timothy McCarroll is being used, lived on the other flat line above. The broadsheet office was put out from there. And then it went to Dominion right after that is raunchy wasn't the lesbian magazine, but I did have a lesbian articles from time to time, and it had one of the biggest lesbian splits in history in terms of trying to rent a space and in Ponsonby road, and then lesbian workshop wanted to join forces. Now the broadsheet committee knew they had the lesbian art workshop would have no money. And so broadsheet would be carrying the can for the rent. And they'll be too many political differences and so on. So they, they didn't take on the idea of the workshop, and it caused this big split with in the community and lesbians. Lyft pro cheap, but they hadn't written many things for broadsheet. Anyway, so. So Sandy Hall and I and thanks got a hard time saying the for staying on the collector. I thought while leave, you know, if you wanted to have a lesbian voice, you needed to stay on the air, but then we were deemed not real experience because we had children. So the broadsheet office was somewhere in this area, in a building that looked a bit more like the wooden buildings over there, so of course, it was pretty easy to demolish hope they never remove that building over there, because we've lost so much of K road that has such a good history and such a good, you know, from for the age of this area. So that's where the magazine was turned out. And that point they were lesbian articles being published in the magazine. That all changed when, after the split, they took over a place and exec Avenue. And john ANZAC Avenue one day some lesbians decided I didn't like the porn shop at the bottom of ANZAC Avenue, and we ended on motorbikes and smashed the glass and generally cause mayhem in the shop. And of course, the police came immediately up to broadsheet and I had bad play blighters, which isn't a picture of the varicose veins in my feet. So I had some sandals on and my feet bandaged, and bandages. So the place took one look at my feet of a highly suspicious that I've been kicking in class. So once I showed them what the problem was they then [00:32:32] that, yes. [00:32:37] So [00:32:38] there's always surprises. And one thing that amazed me was a police woman who was doing some voluntary work at the Museum at the broadsheet office at the time, because we had a sort of archives collection there. And I just couldn't believe that she could just, she took one look at the place and recognize them, and gave a false name and address and I was amazed. Let's try to do it. With such finesse. I would have gone on Eventbrite read on their behalf. But fortunately, I didn't. [00:33:09] Because I'm hopeless, absolutely hopeless, and [00:33:12] telling any fear whatsoever. It's just a nice, I mean, sure enough, just about put her on the pedestal [00:33:18] to be able to do that. [00:33:21] So there was always something going on. [00:33:25] So sure, if someone does the history of the broadsheet magazine, it would make some interesting reading with the weaving in and out of listening to the stories and announce that. So we walked down here along the way, right, I won't talk quite so much. There was a whole range of clubs, as soon as that was a lesbian bar for a while, and then there was kiss. By then the climate of change, we no longer took the lease on buildings, we rented a night in a bar, and it was often a Thursday night or Sunday night, a night when it wasn't busy. And they would often then have male star. So to change completely. It wasn't autonomous. It wasn't run by lesbians. It was run by on normal business. And I didn't last that long, maybe a year or so because as I said, we don't drink enough. We don't buy enough alcohol. And we don't make it worth the while to pay the wages for this stuff. And to pay the rent. So that dwindles out. And across the road. The DNA was actually called cameras for many, many years, and there's lesbian group posts at an exhibition there. I think the first exhibition might have been there for one night stand, put it up one night and [00:34:43] took it out the next day. But [00:34:45] so there for a long time, karma was a place that lesbian summit for various I think it was a Sunday group and they were on a Friday night, it was great tomorrow night, $5 you could go in and, and not freight train music and danced and, and meet new girls, and it was very good place to meeting people. That's the value of the kg club was an opportunity if you didn't have a partner to meet someone that you might [00:35:14] be able to have a relationship with. I mean, I [00:35:17] must admit, I met several of my partners at the kg club and has a nice spot in my heart. It was towards the end of the night, he's listening and started wearing lipstick, which was not a big no no from the feminist community and the guy girls didn't really bother much with lipstick. Gay girls who tended to be involved in the kg club, were more inclined to place for the sporty dykes. drink a lot of beer. And please, generally, whereas the feminists were more inclined maybe to drink wine [00:35:57] and [00:35:58] rave on all night about politics. So I used to have these Yes, that they would go off with a man that were by you know, often considered bisexual if you wore lipstick. And you might just two time ago fending off of the men because you wouldn't be able to resist them. Yeah, there was that sort of fear. Everyone was terribly, terribly insecure, terribly insecure. Oh, yes, you couldn't have long here either. Mine gradually got shorter and shorter and shorter. I only had long hair like yours, simply because it's the cheapest ticket in town. Maybe you, [00:36:39] Erica, [00:36:40] so [00:36:44] so so when the lipstick lesbian started coming up, or you could see that feminism was starting to not have such a big influence on the lesbian community whereas the other community was more considered. There was a split between Lesbians and Gays or the guys were not so political summit, they were often more out even in the feminist, some of them panel waiters, and so on with very out of their trades. And they weren't so many teachers and so on. But there were a few sporty teachers who sort of crossed over and gay girls. world. So that split was a bit reflected in the types of clubs that we had about whether we had, you know, an emphasis on drinking and pool playing and maybe some things. So anyway, we're walk down here to where the pride center was, which is [00:37:40] now rainbow. [00:37:47] Rainbow youth room tonight, one that was the original, not the original Gay Pride team at the second nothing. Gay Pride center was the second one there was one downtown that free to stock open. And it was interesting that there were splits in political alliances. Like if you were involved in the pride center, then it means that you mix a lot more with gay men. Then you had the more staunch feminists who are more involved with, like a feminist magazine, like broadsheet or lesbian magazine that Timothy McCarron is being used, which is very nice to be on and often was only circulated amongst lesbians still is pretty much Yes. And so there were these different factions. And it probably is still today, there's different networks for different things. There's some of us cross all sorts of boundaries, and others more inclined to be just in one group. So we'll head down here to the first page each club and as we go past as I said before, the core of their old family and navel was a band called Candy Candy girls. Before that, it was something else before that it was something else again, I think for us to be there as well and put this downstairs across my family thrown around a bit too and it just depends on the energy and Sarah Lane boon to voluntarily sit up and run those nights to have a dance night for these beings about once a month. She's nuts now called lipstick, and it's going to be in switch. And ego is I had a drink an eagle last night we never did family and I couldn't hear myself even think it was so loud. Oh. [00:39:34] Across the road where the tattooed heart where it says the tattooed hard upstairs, and you can see one person got left behind. And the kg club first began. That was its very first beginning. And as far as people can remember, it was about 1972 73. No one seems to be able to remember the date when it first and we don't seem to have many, I've got one page of committee meeting notes, that's all got that someone handed in to me. So people were moved a lot. You didn't own houses in those days, you've rented and moving a lot when landlords put up the rent and things and [00:40:11] all relationships broke up. So [00:40:14] a lot of papers aren't hit. So we don't have a very good record of that. And some of the women have passed on. No pet before she passed on, she looked for any information she had, but she didn't have any. So that was the very beginning of the kg club that was run by committee and I had to often almost borrow money from each other or use their own money to buy liquor and then sell it on the next at the dance so that they could then get enough money to pay the rent is always a struggle. Well, the police raided that. I think they got into a few high jinks, like getting out on the veranda and dancing there. And, you know, you can see it lends itself to a good party atmosphere. [00:41:02] And I think it was too good a party. And that was put a stop to it. But someone might have fallen off the route. Which was also another problem there was a problem with someone falling out the window of the kg club at Beach Road. The Midnight cop was further back. And that was another club it was where the rainbow flags are just in the next building there. And there was a pussy was what was a cool? We'll see. We'll see. I've got a key ring [00:41:39] surely well remember the name [00:41:43] Yes, you had to be a member of the called the posse global the pussy was putting something [00:41:52] on they probably said flip tails instead of cocktails, you [00:41:58] know what they came for? Originally from the box, the box was down off opposite the region hotel, [00:42:03] there was a club called the gods. [00:42:05] And I tried to auction two women one night will let wind down with the feminists like a [00:42:10] cup of cold secretly [00:42:12] that didn't like it at all. So there was a big split and there was a group of more lipstick, lesbians who were sort of out there and but there was a bit of Dragon involvement in that some of those clubs as well. So drugs often on were problem like Beach Road was the the height of the Asian. So Beach Road, kg club of the hero and Miss Asia taught things. And they were six workers who were obviously using who used to come and have a drink with us and then go off and work to keep their habits. And some of those people have more recently lipsticks work and rejoin the lesbian community or still been part of it really. But on the fringe, they're more involved now. Not mentioning any names, but [00:43:00] so they were [00:43:02] I think you have to remember when people are on the fringe of things and excluded, it's very easy for them to get involved in other things. And lots of us had a past that we either drank too much, or took drugs to try and block out the nasty things that have happened on the way so we always have to remember them. So on to the second real second incarnation of the kg club. [00:43:31] Just about astrology is that in the 1974. The obvious was towards the end of 74, the kg club moved into what's now wine cellar. And that's where it remained until it went to be got closed down and went to be tried. But for a long time. There were no problems here with the kg club. Because the local policeman was an older policeman who felt that the women needed to have a place he used to come and lock the gate to stop drunken men from coming in and arresting the women. So they could leave out the side streets and get out to put street that way. So they're actually probably help for quite a long time. They were no arguments outside people were more respectful of the placement going to that much travel and checking that they're all right and opening the gate and leaving, we saw a woman that looked like or capital that mostly came and couples or three sons that he would see someone who looked as though we're heading to the kg club, and he would let the men so there was a bit more protection than had ever been before. But sadly he got probably moved on the be too close. He put the [00:44:48] record in. [00:44:50] Because that was the beginning. Okay, liberation was when now who here try to coup and applied to do a PhD at Hawaii University got accepted and then couldn't get a visa. And she was labeled by the US Embassy as a pervert. And that really started gay liberation in New Zealand. And we demonstrated up by Queen Victoria on our part. So we had our own that was our sort of stone really. [00:45:22] I'm sorry, I can't claim any lesbian history around Moses, but always think he's a great statue to just admires we will grow. It's a lovely walk down through here. And we will be walking past the Myers Park kindergarten. And several of us lesbians use the Mars pact kindergarten to look after our children while we were at university as well as the university create customers shortages face at the university crease, who was so it was so such a demand for childcare. This was some into the 79 through to the mid 80s. And then they said obviously can crush towards the end of the 80s. So I will say about Mars Park. The whole of this was donated by the Mars family. And one of the family was one of us. Backstage was set up by Stan I forgot the name but he was often called Stella anyway. But he was a very manly man to have a female name still, I was thought and he went with Luke Bryan the rock and roll singer from White Rock. They set up the spa. They were quite misogynist. They didn't really like women there. But because the bar was illegal. We had you had to be a member. So I still have my backstage membership. You paid an entrance fee that was quite steep at the time. I can't remember now how much it was 10 or $15. But you've got free drinks. Now the drinks were definitely dodgy. I think they were alcohol mixes with probably romney essence or something. I never drank any of those. But even agenda and 3ds like john London think a Juniper be nearest. So anyway, the interesting times, we came out the bet we knew and in and out through the back here. And this used to be the traffic department. And all the cops were here. As we staggered out to get into our cars and drive away. It was a very interesting conflict of interest, but they really, no one really got harassed by the traffic cops. That was interesting. I suppose if you could walk a reasonable straight line to your vehicle, let me go. I can't even walk a straight line when I'm sober. So anyway, I never got harassed here. Though I did sometimes at the door sometimes if Stan was on the draw, he was often very grumpy and he didn't like women coming in. But it was interesting. I had a girlfriend at the time who was an artist, and was just a brief relationship. I'm sitting there I suddenly got down and men stopped and started to talk to me and I kept thinking, I think I must know him. But I couldn't quite remember the lights were low and the drinks were ghastly. me right. He said that I looked at I used to be, you know, you can see on what now but I was blondish. They have a bit of a bleach blonde I think at that point. Anyway, he said I looked like his daughter Vanessa. And it turned out [00:48:33] he was Michael rain brave. [00:48:34] And he thought I look like Vanessa Redgrave well, made my night. [00:48:40] My girlfriend was a bit more enthusiastic after that. [00:48:44] And he insisted on buying a string. [00:48:46] And then when he realized I had children, he sort of shared a lot more about his son in some very handsome looking game in wisdom away so [00:48:55] I was not as high point of the night that was too short. [00:49:00] So this was an interesting conversation and we look back up there to cook street where the police station is and run over cook street had of course the famous cook Street Market lesbians had stalls there. And it was a great sort of meeting place. having coffee was just becoming the norm was in the early days of drinking coffee and New Zealand. [00:49:23] Cook Street was a fabulous place. [00:49:26] The whole history of coffee drinking actually in New Zealand, because the first coffee bar was actually set up by Jewish refugee and Hamilton and the coffee was made from acorns because there was no coffee imported into New Zealand during the war. [00:49:39] And that was set up 1939. So [00:49:44] chicory and then was course used for coffee for a long time chicory essence was then available, but for cook Street was a fabulous place. And of course, there were above at the top of cook street on the top of the building was a nightclub cabaret girl. And that was a drag show. And that was fairly notorious to and it's interesting that they were so close, just ignore that. So close to them, please station. The other thing is that one of the pickup places for gay men was in fact princess Street, right. [00:50:23] Albert Park, [00:50:24] and there was the original police station on princess street with a neighborhood theater is now so it's often right under the noses of the law. [00:50:37] Down here after backstage, [00:50:39] across the way was Mojos, another nightclub. And further up the street was the Shakespeare hotel where del regions play the piano mostly playing covers. And it was a great night up to 200 lesbians came in drag queens Japanese semen on a few six work was thrown and it was always a nice sort of mix. And the same and every gay bar in Christchurch and, and and Wellington the same sort of history that mix of people who couldn't fit in is so [00:51:13] that was [00:51:16] part of our history. And I think Adele came back from London in 1968 and began playing in the hotel about that time 6869 so it was very, very early days of any sort of sense of community coming together. So we wander on down at the psycho. So we finish our walk at the stock bar which is named after Frida stock who was involved in a murder trial and the 1930s when the husband of her lover film a Mario was killed by by Frank I think his name was poisoned the sleeping dropped and killed her and so prayed it was the star witness for that murder trial. And we do do a free to start walk for the Heritage Festival as well. It's been it's been more now Frida danced in the Civic theater and she danced naked Justin gold paint, which was you had to get it off you fairly quickly because it was bad via hell, for the G eyes from America, so she was famous. She was a tiny demure person and later Amanda Reese who works now on shorter than straight, she did a play or performance I think you might call it called Star. So we have, we have a whole little book we've put on the history of lesbian theatre. Of course, Frida fits in with that very well in terms of performance, but also the founding members of Theater in New Zealand with two lesbians called Amy Cain and Daisy Isaacs, they were the founding members of Theater in New Zealand, and they used to play in an orchestra with Catherine Mansfield. So we have these amazing networks when we can get enough money to do some research to find out and that was just an amazing discovery. And we've since discovered we had a photograph of Amy Cain for our book on the lesbian theater. But we've now discovered that is a photograph of a daisy Isaacs that I can now get from Alexander to and also another little later to write and money to find and so on. But so it's great to have these bits of history and if you sometimes the Civic is open and if you go upstairs there is a box there with some memorabilia from previous starts dancing days. So that's always worth to come to a show here if it's a lot. I've tried several times with these walks to get in there and I've never managed at the time but sometimes if you're going to a show just fishy the films or something popped up and have a look at the memorabilia from creative star. I think we've got 22 very well I usually stop here and have a coffee but it's up to you people what you want to do and disappears and now you get back to Cairo. If I if you are walking back, may I suggest that you walk across and over [00:54:15] the hope town bridge because it's actually really pretty [00:54:17] walking up that way and that's why
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