A chronology of lesbian and gay communities, movements, and venues in Sydney









1960 - 1966























































Australian society in the late 1960s was hostile to homosexuals or, at least, its institutions were. The Law treated gay men as criminals who could be locked away for 14 years for the “abominable crime of buggery”, and the police were active in trying to prosecute them.

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Coming Out Into a Hostile World

Francesca (Chesca) Curtis's television appearance on The Bailey File, a Melbourne-based current affairs programme on commercial television TV's Channel 9, in May or June 1970, speaking about the aims of the Australian Lesbian Movement was arguably Australia's first "coming out" in the media.

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Australia's First National Coming Out

Homosexual/transgender social groups began forming in the early 1960s in Sydney. They offered membership of a discreet “camp” organisation. Their dances provided the perfect stage for Sydney’s new amateur drag scene to flourish and a place for men and women to meet up and find Miss or Mr Right – at least for the night. In the Leichhardt area, there was no shortage of public halls for these groups.

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Leichhardt/Dykehardt Exhibition

Male homosexual acts are no longer criminal in NSW – the law was amended in 1984, and ‘gay’ men can live quite open lives, with a range of venues where they can socialize in ways similar to their heterosexual counterparts. Also, the two worlds now softly collide, with gays and straights mixing together quite easily in many places in Sydney’s inner suburbs.

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And The Beats Go On...

The following people participated in the first Mardi Gras and/or the related events . While every attempt has been made to ensure accuracy, the list could include errors and omissions. Some names are also likely to be the arrestees' aliases.

78ers Honour Roll

 1981 Venues

Please note, these lists were often reprinted for weeks in community publications without updates and may not be accurate.

Venue Name






Nightclubs, Bars, Discos







7 Flinders St, Darlinghurst




First listing August 1980

Barrel Inn

12 Challis Ave, Potts Point

Management changes in 1979, Sept 1980,

“Live entertainment 6 nights a week”


From 1973. Sold in November 1979

International Vanities (Caps)

163 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

Tommy Brown

“International style night club, fantastic shows on two floors, good disco and cruising bars.” “Mixed crowds with spunky numbers”


July 1969 – 1981

Charlie’s Place

Shop 4, Earlwood Arcade, 363 Homer St, Earlwood

Rodney, Colin, Peter




Dax Wine Bar

160 Flinders St, Surry Hills




From March 1981 – April 1981

Flo’s aka Flo’s Palace

97 Oxford St, Darlinghurst

Roger Claude Teyssedre, Dawn O’Donnell, Alex, Abe Saffron

 “First Saturday Night Fever glass dance floor. Touch of desert camp.”

Gay men, gay Asian men,

1979  - 1981

The Fountain

Macleay St, Kings Cross


Vocalist and guitarist



Les Girls

2c Roslyn St, Kings Cross

Abe Saffron

Formerly Carousel Cabaret


First listing September 1980

Midnight Shift

85 Oxford St, Darlinghurst

John and Brian, David Ross and Nick Lorschy

Fire October 1980

1981 now wider clientele

First listing August 1980


33 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

Dawn O’Donnell, Roger Claude Teyssedre, Alex and Abe Saffron

“Sydney’s hottest gay disco”..


From 1976

Ruby Reds

273 Crown Street, Darlinghurst

Dawn O’Donnell, Roger Claude Teyssedre, Alex and Abe Saffron

Where Sydney girls meet. Open nightly from 8pm.


1979 – 1982


Strand Arcade, Pitt Street, Sydney


Holds Mr Leather Awards. In October it is open for lunch


First listing March 1980


242 William Street, Kings Cross

Tina, Graham and Abe Saffron



From September 1975

Traffic Light Wine Bar

242 Oxford Street, Paddington

Terry is your host

12 noon – 11pm


From 1963. Last listing July 1981

Yolanda’s Wine Bar

9 Pittwater Road, Manly




First listing August 1980

Yvonne’s Place

107 Anzac Parade Kensington




First ad November 1981







Albury Hotel

6 Oxford Street, Paddington

Leigh Jennings



From 28 July 1980

Apollo Bar (Imperial Hotel)

252 Oxford Street, Paddington


Bar seven nights, restaurant entertainment. Mostly male crowd.


After 1979

Back Bar (Oriental Hotel)

230 Crown St, Darlinghurst




Listed August 1980

Beresford Hotel

354 Bourke Street, Surry Hills.

Barry Cecchini

Macho Levi Crowd


From November 1979

Criterion Hotel, The

139 Maitland Road, Islington




“Now open” January 1981

Cricketer’s Arms

106 Fitzroy Street, Surry Hills


Stumps restaurant upstairs August 1980,


From 1973

East Sydney Hotel

Cnr Crown & Cathedral Sts, Woolloomooloo


Jazz band, food


First listing August 1980

Exchange Hotel (Saddletramp Bar)

34 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst




From March 1981

Flinders Hotel

63 Flinders Street, Surry Hills

Peter Brider. Hosts Peter and Mitch



From August 1980

J’s Bar (Royal George Hotel)

Cnr King & Sussex Streets, Sydney




First listing August 1979

J’s Bar (Lismore Hotel)

Pitt Street, City


“operates Fri and Sat nights”


First listing March 1981

Nelson Hotel

232 Oxford St, Woollahra

Hosts are Jon and Ron

“when you’re tired of the disco beat”


From April 1981

Rex Hotel

58 Macleay St, Kings Cross




From 1955

Town Hall Hotel Balmain

366 Darling Street, Balmain




First ad December 1981

Unicorn Hotel

106 Oxford Street, Paddington.


Mostly male crowd, bar and restaurant.


From October 1979

Male Saunas/Sex on Premises







253 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

Neil Taylor

“Hunky hot men.”


From 1973

Club 80

48 Little Oxford St, Darlinghurst




First listing August 1980

The Ox (Club)

80 Oxford St, Darlinghurst


Formerly Footballers Club.


Listed September 1981. Burned out c. October 8 1981


83 - 85 Anzac Parade, Kensington

Ken (Kandy) Johnson

1973 - 1984

Kandy returns in shows in Nov 1980


From 1972

King Steam

rear 128 Pitt St, Sydney.

Roger Claude Teyssedre and Colin



After June 1980

Roman Bath

250 Pitt St, Sydney

David Ross, Nicholas Lorschy

“Relax in the most luxurious and well appointed steam bath in the southern hemisphere.”


1973 - 1988


121 Crown Street, East Sydney. (entry via Crown Lane)

David Lorschy. It is sold in October 1979.

“Open every night from 10pm.”

“Get your ass here and see what the future as in store for it”


From 1977 (TBC)







Exiles Bookshop

207 Oxford St, Paddington

Susumu Hirayanagi and Nicholas Pounder

A wide range of gay literature available


Review February 1981

Updated: 25/1/16 John Witte 


1981 Activist and social groups

Please note, these lists were often reprinted for weeks in community publications without updates and may not be accurate.



Date listed





46 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

First listing December 1979

Acceptance Gay Switchboard

46 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

First listing September 1980

ALP Gay Group

Meets Sydney Labor Club

First listing August 1980


Box 30, Hunters Hill

First mention May 1980

Armidale Gay Group (TALS)


First listing September 1980

Australian Communication

Box 222 Haymarket

First listing March 1981




Boomerangs Social Club

Box 94, Broadway

First listing March 1979

Black, ethnic and Third World Gays

Uma c/- CAMP

First listing October 1980





33a Glebe Pt Rd, Glebe

First listing July 1980

CAMP Women’s Group


Set up June 29 1980

Campus Homosexual Collective

Alexander Mackie CAE

First listing August 1980

Central Coast Gay Group

c/- Copper Door, Gosford

First listing November 1980 – June 1981


Kim and Warren

First listing October 1980

Clover Women’s Club

Dance St Augustine’s Balmain

First listing August 1980

CPA Sydney, Gay Collective

2 Dixon Street, Sydney

First listing OWN September 1981

Country Network

David Sergeant PO Dubbo

First listing October 1980

Cricketer’s Arms Social Club

Surry Hills

First listing August 1980

Cronulla Gay Group

PO Box 195, Cronulla

First listing 1979





PO Darlinghurst

Announced March 1981

The Dolphins

Beresford Hotel

First listing June 1979




Family Social Club


First listing 1979

Feminist Bookshop

2 Rowntree St, Balmain

First listing September 1980

Fitness Exchange

121 Crown Street, East Sydney

New location from 9 Feb 1980

Friends of Gay Theatre

PO Box 22, Kings Cross

First listing May 1980




Gay Al-Anon

46 Oxford St, Darlinghurst

First listing November 1980

Gaycare Counselling

Wayside Chapel

First listing November 1981

Gay Community News, Sydney, Collective

Box 380, Broadway

First listing October 1981

Gay Community Services Centre Trust Fund

L21, 44 Market St, City

Set up 5 November 1980

Gay Counselling Service

33a Glebe Pt Rd, Glebe

From October 1980

Gay Film Group/Fund


Listed September – October1980

Gay Jewish Social Group

Kim and Warren

Listed October 1980.

Gay Left

Box A650, Sydney South

Est 7 December 1980

Gay Liberation Quire

Box 380, Broadway

First mention 27 June 1981.

Gay Philhellenic Society

Meets Flo’s Palace

First listing April 1981

Gay Poetics Group

Est at 6th Conference

First listed Sept 80 – April 81

Gay Rights Lobby


Established 16 October 1980

Gay Solidarity Group

Box 380, Broadway. Meets first Thursday each month.

First listing 1979

Gay Task Force

Box 6, Balmain

First listing 1979

Gay Teachers and Students Group

Box 3, Kingsgrove

First listing Aug 1980

Gay Theatre Company

Box 22 Kings Cross

First listing March 1980

Gay Union of Tertiary Staff

Sydney University

First mention August 1980

Gay Waves


First mention March 1980

Girls’ Own

Box 188, Wentworth Building

First mention October 1981

Group 11

Red Cross Hall, Penrith

First listing May 1981




International Fellowship for Gay

PO Box 102 Mayfield NSW

First listing March 1981


Box 158, Leichhardt

First listing in OWN September 1981




Knights of the Chameleons

Phone number

2nd formal Ball notice Sept1981




Leichhardt Women’s Centre

164 Flood St, Leichhardt

First listing August 1980

Lesbian Alcoholics Anonymous

164 Flood St, Leichhardt

First listed in OWN September 1981

Lesbian Feminists

62 Regent St, Chippendale

Listed August 1980

Lesbian Group at the Women’s Health Centre, Liverpool

George Street, Liverpool

First listing 1980

Lesbian Line

Phone number

First listing December 1980

Lesbian Mothers Custody Rights Fund/Lesbian Mothers

Box 6, Balmain

Listing from June 1981

Lesbian Teachers Group

Box 2070 Parramatta North

Listed August – October 1980




Mardi Gras Task Group 1981

Meets Side F/X

Listed September – October 1980

Macquarie Uni Gays

Macquarie University

First listing August 1980

Mardi Gras Committee 1981


First listing October 1980

Mardi Gras Committee 1982

Box A483, South Sydney

First listing September 1981

Mature Lesbians Group

Meets at Women’s Liberation

First listed in OWN September 1981

Metropolitan Community Church

265 Elizabeth Street, Sydney, Village Church, Paddington

First listing 1979

Mirshvar Dagan Group


First listing August 1980

Mountaineers, The

PO Box 205 Springwood

First mention May 1980

Mystics Group

c/- CAMP

First meeting September 1980




Newcastle Gay Society


First listing September 1980

Newcastle Women’s Group


First listing September 1980 – May 81


Clarence Street

First listing May 1980


Village Church, Paddington

First listing November 1980

Northshore Alternative

Dee Why

First listing August 1980




Parents and Friends of Gays

Meets at Friends House, 119 Devonshire Street Surry Hills.

First mention May 1980

Pelican Club, The

Copper Door Restaurant

Perhaps renaming of Central Coast Gay Group. Listing June 1981

Polynesians Social Club

GPO Box 2935

First listing August 1980


At Maxy’s 600 George St; At Majestic 49 New Canterbury Rd, Petersham

First advert November 1980





Sydney University

First listing September 1980

Roo Bike Club, The


First listing July 1980




South Pacific Motor Club

2 Lilyfield Rd, Rozelle

First listing June 1980

Stonewall Collective

Box 485, Haymarket

First listing December 1980

Sundowners, The

Box 3, Campsie

First listing March 1981

SWAG Wagga Gay Group

Wagga Wagga

First listing September 1980

Sydney Gay Business Association


First listing August 1981

Sydney Gay Centre

51 Holt Street, Surry Hills

First mention October 1981

Sydney University Gay Society SUGAYS

Sydney University

First mention September 1980




Unicorn Club


First listing August 1980


Box 1097, Wollongong

First listing May 1981

University of NSW Lesbians


First listed August 1980

University of NSW Gay Society (GAYSOC)


First listing June 1980




WEL Lesbian Group

32 Grosvenor St, Sydney

First listed in OWN September 1981

Women’s Healing Centre

119 Trafalgar St, Annandale

First listed in OWN September 1981




Villagers, The

PO 429 Liverpool

First listing March 1980




Women’s Music

Women’s Healing Centre, 119 Trafalgar St, Annandale

Listed December 1981

Women’s Self Defence Classes

Heffron Hall 6pm Wednesdays

First listed in OWN September 1981

Women’s Warehouse

Bay 9, 4 Ultimo Rd, Ultimo

First listing August 1980


PO Box 148, Glebe

First listing September 1981




Young Gays

c/- CAMP

First listing December 1980

Zap a Newsagency

Box 380, Broadway

First listing September 1981

Updated: 25/1/16 John Witte


1981 Community events


If not in Sydney


3 January 1981


The Gay Theatre Company opens their new season with Who Stole My Closet at the Wayside Chapel Theatre. It is listed as an official Festival of Sydney event.

20 January 1981


The final performance of Wiz II at International Vanities is the last upstairs show. Allyn Miller and Tommy Brown, Ross Coleman, David Penfold and David Mitchell receive tributes from the audience.

23  January 1981


The NSW Gay Teachers and Students (GAYTAS) group receives the first State Government grant to produce a kit on homosexuality for schools.

24  January 1981


The Festival of Sydney Parade includes gay floats from The Gay Counselling Service and The Council of Gay Groups.

31 January 81


Fire destroys the Fruit and Vegetable Markets in the Haymarket, the venue for this year’s post Mardi Gras Parade dance and concert.

February 1981


Dax Wine Bar at 160 Flinders Street Surry Hills opens to a gay clientele.

February 1981


Saddletramp at 34 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst opens.

10  February 1981


The first meeting of the Gay Rights Lobby (GRL) gives the ‘highest priority’ to the homosexual law reform campaign. Craig Johnston is elected chairperson and Lex Watson convenor.

21  February 1981


The first Summer Mardi Gras is rained out and is postponed.

28  February 1981


30 people are detained by police after a raid on the Rex Hotel, Kings Cross.

28 February 1981


The 1981 Australian Mr Leather Contest is launched at the Criterion Hotel. “Dallas” wins Mr Leather Newcastle.

March 1981


The first issue of Girls Own is published.

March 1981


The Sundowners, a group which aims to maintain a home for old age pensioner lesbians and gay men, applies for registration as a charity.

March 1981


The Australian Labor Party Gay Group begins advertising monthly meetings in the Sydney Star.

March 1981


Meetings of a lesbian group at the Women’s Health Centre Liverpool are advertised in the Sydney Star.

March 1981


The new head of the Vice Squad, Detective Sergeant Sheppard orders a crackdown on Sydney’s gay businesses according to Sydney Star sources.

March 1981


The Reverend Fred Nile is given a weekly column in the Sunday Telegraph.

March 1981


The Stonewall Collective advertises fortnightly organising meetings.

March 1981


Chutzpah, a gay Jewish social group, advertises contact names.

March 1981


The Gay Rights Lobby writes to all members of the NSW Parliament seeking their support for a bill to repeal anti-homosexual laws.

1  March 1981


The Crimes (Sexual Offences) Act 1980 comes into force removing distinctions between homosexual and heterosexual conduct.

21  March 1981


The postponed 1981 Mardi Gras parade begins at Moore Park and 6,000 participants go up Flinders Street, Taylor Square, Oxford, Elizabeth, Goulburn and George Streets to Hyde Park. Hen’s Teeth and B-Tels perform in Hyde Park.

22 March 1981


Ron Moore wins Mr Leather Australia at the Stranded Nightclub.

24 March 1981


GAYTAS members Eddy Ashmore and Geoff Ostling who are creating a school kit on homosexuality, come under a sustained attack from the Festival of Light, the Sun Herald and John Laws. Their grant is withdrawn.

25  March 1981           


George Petersen raises the homosexual law reform issue during the debate in State Parliament on the Crimes (Sexual Assault) Amendment Bill.

28 March 1981


The Villagers hold a Royal Purple night at Liverpool.

30 March 1981


Dax Wine Bar is no longer gay.

April 1981


Gayprint, a newspaper by and about the Gay Community Service Centre is published.

April 1981


The Cronulla Gay Group (CGG) begins advertising its social events in the Sydney Star.

7 April 1981


Legislation to reform rape laws leave the anti-homosexual sections of the Crimes Act untouched. MLA George Petersen’s amendment to do so is ruled out of order.

7 April 81


700 attend a rally outside Parliament House to support George Petersen’s amendments. 100 members of the Festival of Light hold a counter rally opposite.

10 April 1981


The Gay Philhellenic Society begins to advertise meetings and social activities.

25 April 1981


The first Australian Homosexuality and Socialism Conference is held.

May 1981


The 1981 Sydney Gay Guide published by Gaysoc in conjunction with the Gay Counselling Service.

May 1981


The Green Park Diner at 219 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst opens.

May 1981


The Nelson Hotel at 232 Oxford Street, Woollahra advertises to a gay clientele.

May 1981


Group 11, a social group for the Western Suburbs begins advertising fortnightly meetings in Penrith.

May 1981


Unity, a gay community service group advertises fortnightly meetings.

4 May 1981


A public meeting is called to discuss the 1982 Mardi Gras at the Heffron Hall.

8 May 1981


The Sydney Star reveals that the newspaper is banned by Les Girls, The Barrel Inn, Patchs, Flo’s Palace and Kings Steam after it reported the Midnight Shift fire in 1980, police harassment and the Petersen amendment.

11 May 1981


Carol and Doug McLean of Parents and Friends of Gays (PFLAG) speak with Carolyn Jones on Radio 2BL.

15 May 1981


The Dolphins second run to Hartley Vale draws 19 members and guests.

16 May 1981


The Boomerangs present Hello Hollywood at the Balmain Town Hall.

17 May 1981


The National Times reports that GAYTAS, the Schools’ Commission and the NSW Education Department support the distribution of the human development kit despite opposition from the Federal Minister of Education, the Festival of Light and the Concerned Parents’ Association.

21 May 1981


Gay Community Service Centre supporters meet at the Acceptance Centre in Oxford Street.

22 May 1981


The Gay Counselling Service has a doctor on the premises every Friday.

June 1981


The Copper Door Restaurant hosts the Pelican Club on Tuesdays and Fridays.

June 1981


The Fitness Exchange re-locates from the Signal Bar building after the bar takes over their space.

June 1981


The Gay Rights Lobby collect signatures in Oxford Street and in suburban shopping centres.

June 1981


The Lesbian Mothers Publications Group work to publish a practical manual on how lesbian mothers can gain and keep custody of their children.

4 June 1981


The Lesbian Mothers Custody Rights Support Fund holds a fund-raising night of women’s music at the Sussex Hotel.

5 June 1981

Los Angeles

Pneumocystis jiroveci (carinii) Pneumonia ( PCP) is first reported among gay men in Los Angeles by the Centres for Disease Control Weekly.

6 June 1981


The Party, a warehouse disco, organised by The Organisers, features US DJ John Berge and innovative special effects, is held.

7 June 1981


The Mountaineers hold a Black and White Ball at the Springwood Civic Centre.

12 June 1981


The Pleasure Chest, a sex shop in George Street is fire bombed.

15 June 1981


Weekly workshops for actors and others interested in developing their own dramatic material are conducted weekly by the Gay Theatre Group at the Acceptance Centre.

20 June 1981


The Stonewall Week Dance is held at Manning House, Sydney University. The bands are Stray Dags, Hen’s Teeth and The Other Band.

20 June 1981


Stonewall Week Boomerangs Social Club Dance Hello Hollywood is held at the Randwick Town Hall.

21 June 1981


The Stranded Nightclub holds Dragathon featuring Chanelle, Theresa and Chris, Michael Matou, Phaedra, Monique and Carlotta.

22 June 1981


32 gay men and women attend the first meeting of the Sydney Gay Business Association (SGBA) at Xavier’s Restaurant, Surry Hills.

23 June 1981


The Gay Rights Lobby holds a public meeting on the need for law reform at the Heffron Hall. George Petersen MLA, Chief Justice Elizabeth Evatt and solicitor Virginia Bell speak.

23 June 1981


Stonewall Week Film Program screens over three days at the Filmmakers Co-Op.

24 June 1981


Stonewall Week Public Forum on police harassment of homosexuals is presented by Gay Left

27June 1981


The Gay Liberation Quire debuts in Belmore Park as 1000 assemble for the Stonewall march.

27 June 1981


500 - 1000 strong Stonewall Week March for Gay Rights begins at Belmore Park and ends at Hyde Park with a concert with Hen’s Teeth.

27 June 1981


Stonewall Week Council of Gay Groups Dance is held at the Glebe Town Hall.

27 June 1981


Stonewall Week Women’s Concert with Lavender Blues and Jull and Jenny is held at Leesmoore Centre, Lilyfield.

28 June 1981


The Metropolitan Community Church holds a Stonewall Day Commemorative Service at the Uniting Church, Oxford Street, Paddington.

July 1981        


Sydney Star produces the first article on what was to become AIDS – New Pneumonia linked to gay lifestyle. It quotes five cases detected between October 1980 and May 1981 in the US.

17 July 1981


The NSW Premier, Neville Wran opens Radio Skid Row.

19 July 1981


Clover Women’s Group holds its annual dance at St Augustine’s Hall, Balmain.

26 July 1981


Winter in the West Disco is held by Group 11 at Mulgoa.

August 1981


Lesbian separatist leader, Mary Daly speaks to 1000 women in Sydney.

August 1981


The Australian Association of Homosexual Rights Lobbies is formed.

August 1981


The Gay Rights Lobby prepares for an intensive campaign in the electorate of Bligh for the upcoming state election.

1 August 1981


The Sundowners holds a Soup Kitchen Night at the Heffron Hall.

1-2 August 1981


The Annual Convention of the Young Liberal Movement adopts a policy to repeal all laws prohibiting homosexual acts between people aged 16 and over.

8 August 1981


The Polynesians City Lights review and dance is held at Coronation Hall, Mascot.

9 August 1981


The Nelson Hotel presents Showtime starring Chase Manhattan, Tracy Diamond, Cynamone Jones and Pepper Stevens.

10 August 1981


CAMP Lobby Ltd agrees to change its name to the Gay Counselling Service of NSW.

10 August 1981


Robert Lovett is convicted for “behaving in such a manner as to be likely to cause reasonable persons in a public place to be seriously alarmed or seriously affronted” at Flo’s Palace in February 1980.

11 August 1981


Members of the Lesbian Teachers Group and GAYTAS take part in a deputation to the Director-General of Education Mr Swan to discuss welfare issues for gay teachers and students and issues surrounding the proposed kit on homosexuality.

15 August 1981


400 turn up for the Boomerangs party 86 - A Woman’s Disco.

17 August 1981


60 people tongue kiss outside the Central Court, Liverpool Street to protest the court decision finding Robert Lovett guilty of offensive behaviour.

29  August 1981           


300 people attend the seventh National Conference for Lesbians and Homosexual Men. Its emphasis is on organising within the gay community.

September 1981


The first study in Australia to look at the incidence of bisexual feelings by the School of Psychiatry at the University of NSW, reveals that 40% of ‘normal’ people are aware they have homosexual feelings.

September 1981


Gaycare, a gay counselling service begins at the Wayside Chapel.

7 September 1981


The Gay Rights Lobby’s fund raising party at Ken’s Karate Klub features the Gay Liberation Quire.

8  September 1981


At a public meeting is organised by the Gay Rights Lobby where candidates for Bligh declare their support for gay rights.

10  September 1981


Lex Watson and the candidates for the State seat of Bligh are interviewed on the Mike Willesee Show.

14 September 1981


The Gay Business Association convenes a public meeting and invites candidates for the electorate of Bligh to speak.

15 September 1981


The NSW Council of Civil Liberties present a forum, Offences in Public Places at the Heffron Hall.

15 September 1981


The Lesbian Line Coffee Shop opens every Tuesday evening at the Leichhardt Women’s Health Centre.

18 September 1981


The Acceptance National Conference, On Being Human is held.

19  September 1981


The pro-gay ALP candidate Fred Miller wins the State seat of Bligh. The Lobby for Equality (Gary Beauchamp, Michael Glynn & John Marsden) distribute anti-ALP how-to-votes. Fred Nile is elected to NSW Upper House.

19 September 1981


The Sydney Gay Centre holds a gala opening at 51 Holt Street, Surry Hills.

19 September 1981


The Wran Labor Government is returned. Fred Miller, ALP, unseats the Liberal member for Bligh of the past 13 years.

25  September 1981


The US Consulate is picketed on the International Day of Action against harassment of gay tourists.

26 September 1981


The 19th annual Formal Ball featuring the Gown of the Year Award and the Eighth Empress of Sydney Awards is held at Kei-Ron.

October 1981


The Gay Rights Lobby writes to the newly elected members of the NSW Parliament calling on them to support repealing the anti-homosexual sections of the Crimes Act.

October 1981


Peter John Parkes, a member of the Gay Counselling Service is found gagged, bound and stabbed to death in Potts Point.

9 October 1981


The Ox, a small leather bar, at the corner of Crown and Oxford Streets, is destroyed by fire.

10 October 1981


The Gay Counselling Service holds a workshop Gays and Their Families at the University of NSW, targeting counsellors who want to understand their gay clients.

17  October 1981


The first official manifestation of the Sydney Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence is held at Longnose Point.

18  October 1981


First reports of US AIDS cases appear in the Sydney gay press.

31 October 1981


The Albury, Beresford, Flinders Hotels and the Midnight Shift encourage gay men and women to adopt the gay American trend of Halloween with a joint-venue party.

November 1981


Greek Consul-General, Constantine Giannaris, is murdered at Darling Point.

November 1981


27 representatives of gay groups and organisations meet to re-affirm support of full equality and oppose the Wran Bill which is being put up to replace George Petersen’s Homosexual Law Reform Bill.

November 1981


Kandy’s Kandid Kamera Show review plays at Yvonne’s Place, 107 Anzac Parade, Kensington.

November 1981


100 prominent people endorse a statement of support for the principle of equality before the law for homosexuals.

November 1981


The 39th Synod of the Anglican Diocese of Sydney refuses to receive a petition from Fabian LoSchiavo from Angays calling for more open discussion of homosexual issues.

1 November 1981


The seventh annual Polympics, held at the Northern Suburbs Athletic Field, Lane Cove, is washed out.

1 November 1981


A feminist fun-run-walk-crawl fund raiser is held at King Georges Park Lilyfield.

1 November 1981


The Gay Solidarity Group is denied access to the Polympics to hand out leaflets for the next rally outside Parliament House.

4 November 1981


200 people demonstrate outside Parliament House in support of the Petersen Bill.

11  November 1981


A Homosexual Law Reform rally of 200 is held outside State Parliament

11  November 1981


George Petersen introduces a homosexual law reform Bill into the NSW Legislative Assembly.

17 November 1981


Michael Cornwell and his 16 year old accomplice are charged with the murders of Greek Consul Ginnaris and Peter John Parkes.

22 November 1981


A discussion of lesbian culture and lesbians and children is held at Women’s Liberation House, 62 Regent Street, Chippendale.

24 November 1981


A candlelight rally of 800 from Hyde Park to Parliament House takes place to support the Petersen Bill is held. OWN 27/11/81

25-26  November 1981


The NSW Legislative Assembly debates the Petersen Bill.

27 November 1981


Beat Crazy with 3d and Jacqueline Hyde opens at Syds nightclub, Darlinghurst.

29 November 1981


The Beresford’s Royal Wedding Party is a glittering event with hundreds attending.

29 November 1981


An Aussie Summer party is held co-jointly at the Albury, Flinders, Beresford Hotels and the Midnight Shift.

30  November 1981


The Gay Rights Lobby and the Gay Business Association adopt a neutral position on the Petersen and the Knight Bills.

December 1981


The Women’s Warehouse closes.

December 1981


The Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) and Acceptance launch Identity a new group for under 18 gays.

2  December 1981


A Homosexual Law Reform candlelight rally ends outside Parliament House. The Gay Rights Lobby calls for the defeat of the Egan Bill.

2  December 1981   


The NSW Parliament rejects the Petersen, Knight and Egan moves to reform anti-gay laws.

5 December 1981


A Gaywaves fund-raising dance is held at Leichhardt Town Hall.

8  December 1981


The Gay Rights Lobby (GRL) holds an emergency meeting and reaffirms its policy on equal age of consent. Lex Watson leaves GRL.

24  December 1981


The Gay Liberation Quire carols cause Fred Nile to demand banning Gaywaves.

31 December 1981


The Gay Theatre Company begins a season of two plays – Writers Cramp and Hormones.

Updated: 24/09/15