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

 1989 Community and activist groups and organisations



Date listed




Acceptance Sydney

15 Francis Street, East Sydney

Listed December 1979; Move October 1987.

After Care Association

John Malone 665 4574

Listed January 1989

AIDS Advocate

101/412 Oxford Street, Paddington

Listed December 1989

AIDS Council of NSW

68 Sophia Street, Surry Hills

February 1985

AIDS Hotline of the Albion Street Centre

332 4000

January 1989

Al-Anon Gay Support Group

33 Wellington Street,


Ad January 1987

Albion Street Clinic

332 4000

March 1985


PO Box 98, Enmore. Suite 3, 224a King Street Newtown

Mentioned May 1980


150 Albion Street, Surry Hills

May 1985

Antibody Positive Support Group

150 Albion Street, Surry Hills

April 1988

Armidale Gay Society (TAGS)

PO Box 581, Armidale

Listed 11 May 1983

Australian National Sports Association

PO Box 433, Coogee

Listed March 1988




Bathurst District Gay Society

Box 762, Bathurst

Listed July 1988

Blue Mountains PWLA Day Care Centre

2 Station Street, Katoomba

Listed November 1989

Blue Mountains Triangle

Box 216, Blackheath

Listed December 1988

Bobby Goldsmith Foundation

PO Box 97, Darlinghurst

Mention July 1984;

Bobcats Lesbian Touch Football Team

PO Box 667, North Sydney

Listed July 1986

Boomerangs Social Club/Group

Box 429, Darlinghurst

Listed March 1979




Campaign Magazine

58A Flinders Street, Darlinghurst

Listed January 1989

Castaways Social Group

POP Box 857, Parramatta

June 1985

Clover Businesswomen’s Club

122 Victoria Road, Drummoyne

Listed August 1980

Coastal Connections

PO Box 259, Toukley

Newly formed November 1984

Coming Out Group

33 Wellington Street, Chippendale

Listed April 1989

Community AIDS Initiative for Treatment Education

101/412 Oxford Street, Paddington

Article July 1989.

Community Art (WALK)

Kerry Hartnett 517 1862

Listed January 1989

Community Support Network

PO Box 415, Darlinghurst

Formed at meeting June 1984

Country Network

PO Box 448, Kingston ACT

Listed October 1980

Cronulla Gay Group

PO Box 195, Cronulla

Listed 1979

Cross Section

519  5830

Listed April 1989




The Dolphin Motor Club

PO Box N13, Petersham North;

Listed June 1979

Dykes on Bikes

550 1623

Were in 1988 parade




Eagle One

745 3190

Listing November 1988

Enola Gay

Box 380, Broadway

Signature 1988




The Family

PO Box 479, Leichhardt

Ad September 1985

Fitness Exchange

33 Wellington Street, Chippendale

New location October 1981

FEEPCO (Gay Youth Group)


Formed September 1988

Flamingo Society

Box R47, Rhodes

Listing January 1988

Flix Club

Paul 516 4140

Listed June 1988

Four Seasons Social Group

PO Box 1654, Coffs Harbour

Listing November 1985;

Freelance Bowling League

c/- 13/35 Roslyn Street, Kings Cross

Listed April 1983

Friends of PWAs

150 Albion Street, Surry Hills

Listed December 1988





319 2799

Ad May 1984;

Gay and Lesbian Arts Association

Performance Space, Cleveland Street

Launched 22 August 1988

Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service of NSW

33 Wellington Street,


Name change ?1986

Gay and Lesbian Association (GALA)

Union Box 63, UNSW

Listing July 1986

Gay and Lesbian Association (GALA)

Box 96 Student Council, Macquarie University

Listed December 1989

Gay and Lesbian Community Centre Trust

Becomes Pride Steering Committee December 1989

Listed on dance Ad April 1989.

Gay and Lesbian Immigration Task Force

GPO Box 416, Sydney

May 1985; renamed July 1987;

Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby

PO Box 9, Darlinghurst

Forms 21 April 1988

Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras 1988 – 1989

Workshop, 15-19 Boundary Street, Rushcutters Bay

Listed July 1986. Name change 6 December 1988

Gay History Project

Merewether Building University of Sydney

Article June 1988

Gayline (GLCS)

02319 2799

Ad January 1987

Gay Radio Information News Service (GRINS)

PO Box 380, Broadway

Listed July 1984

Gay Solidarity Group

Newtown Community Centre meetings

Established 1978

Gay Waves Radio


Mentioned March 1980

Gay What’s On (GLCS)

699 6320

Listed July 1986

Global Pen Friends

Box 343, Punchbowl

Listing July 1989




Harbour City Amateur Wrestling Club

Box 433, Coogee

Listed July 1988





33 Wellington Street, Chippendale

Listed 16 May 1983

Inner West Connections

799 5140 Ashfield

Listing November 1988

Inside Out

PO Box 380 Broadway

Listed 13 October 1983




Karumah Day Centre

Mackillop House, Lambton Road, Newcastle

October 1989

Knights of the Chameleons

PO Box 43, Cammeray

Listed September 1981

Koala Deaf Federation for Gays and Lesbians

Box 43, Enmore

Listed July 1989

Koornkoo Walkers

PO Box 369 Clarence Street, Sydney

Listed January 1985




Lambda Ministeries

PO Box 897, Bondi Junction

Listed July 1988

Lesbian and Gay Caucus ACOA

5th Fl 245 Castlereagh Street, Sydney

Listed July 1986

Lesbian Coming Out and Support Group

263 Bridge Road, Glebe

Listed December 1989

Lesbian Ethics Workshop

Everyone’s Health Centre, 164 Flood Street, Leichhardt

Started in 1987

Lesbian Line

Everywoman Health Centre

Listed January 1985

Lesbian Network

PO Box 215, Rozelle

Listing November 1988

Lesbians Everywhere Support Group

PO Box 667, North Sydney

Listing November 1985

Lesbians on the Loose


Article December 1989

Lightning 2000

PO Box 504, Turramurra

Listed as new social group May 1987




Metropolitan Community Church

Village Church, Oxford Street, Paddington

Listed December 1989

Metropolitan Community Church of the Good Shepherd

15 Francis Street, East Sydney

Listing February 1988

Metropolitan Community Church of the Southern Cross

56A Raglan St Waterloo

Mention May 1986. Closes November 1989

Moore Park Volleyball Club

430 3930

Article June 1989

Mullumbimby AIDS Resource Centre

Box 679, Mullumbimby

Listed December 1989




National Coalition for Gay Law Reform


Article March 1988

New Tradition Dancers

Heffron Hall, Darlinghurst

Listed January 1985

Northern Rivers Gaywaves


Listed again June 1988

Northshore Voluntarians

PO Box 483, Chatswood

Ad May 1984





c/- South Sydney Women’s Centre, 231 Abercrombie Street, Chippendale

Listing November 1985




PADY (Poofs and Dykes Youth)

33 Wellington Street, Chippendale

Listed December 1989

Parents of Gays

93 3418

Group revival call August 1985, active January 1985. Not active July 1986. Listed 1987

People Living with AIDS Coalition

68 Sophia Street, Surry Hills

Forms 28 September 1988

Phoenix ten pin bowling

Rockdale Bowl

Listing October 1987

Pink Ink Anthology of Lesbian and Gay Writers

Kerry Bashford Box 378, Newtown

Launch September 1989

Police Gay Liaison Unit/Group

24 hour hotline 699 4506 April 1989

Meeting to discuss set up 14 October 1984

Pollynesians Social Club

GPO Box 2935

Listed August 1980

Powerhouse Social Club

2/11 Edward Street, Ryde

Listed July 1989

Pride Steering Committee

PO Box 1064, Darlinghurst

Listed December 1989

PWA Day Centre (Maitraya)

111 Jersey Road, Paddington. 396 Bourke Street, Surry Hills

Established November 1987. Called PWA Day Centre (Maitraya) September 1989. Bourke Street opens 5 December 1989




The Quilt Project


Founded 23 October 1988




Rape Crisis

PO Box 188, Drummoyne

Listed July 1986

Redfern Connexion

Radio Skid Row 88.9 FM

Listed July 1988




Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence

PO Box 110, Petersham

Listed August 1982

SM Downunder

418 6671

Listed July 1989

Softtouch Women’s Softball Team

Vicki 365 4208

Listed February 1989

South Pacific Motor Club

35 Septimus Street, Erskineville; 23 Sloane Street, Newtown

Formed 1970. Listed June 1980; new venue listed July 1987; new venue November 1987; new venue November 1989

Southern Cross Outdoors Group

PO Box 411 Dee Why

Listed 14 April 1983

Sydney Day Centre (Maitraya)

111 Jersey Road, Paddington

Established November 1987. Called PWA Day Centre (Maitraya) September 1989

Sydney Front Runners

Rob 398 2623

Mentioned May 1987

Sydney Gay Centre

33 Wellington St, Chippendale

Mentioned October 1981

Sydney Gay Community Publishing

1st Fl, 292 Crown Street, Darlinghurst

Listed January 1989

Sydney Gay and Lesbian Sports Association

33 Wellington St, Chippendale

Ad January 1985. Name change November 1988

Sydney Gay Youth Group

33 Wellington St, Chippendale

Mention first meeting 10 August 1985

Sydney Network

818 5135

Listed November 1987

Sydney Rams

Rushcutters Bowl

Mentioned January 1984;  moves to Rushcutters July 1987

Sydney Road Runners Motor Cycle Club

PO Box 986, Darlinghurst

February 1985. Male and female riders

Sydney Spokes

Frank 664 1251

Mention September 1986

Sydney University Gay and Lesbian Association (GALA)

Box 248, Holme Building

Listed May 1988




Triangle Basketball Club

Glebe High School, Sydney Boys High School.

May 1985

Tropical Fruits

Box 672, Mullumbimby

Listing July 1988. New address July 1989

Twenty-Ten  Youth Refuge

PO Box 213, Glebe

Forms March 1982





Box 1097, Wollongong

Listed May 1981




Village Voice Australia

4th Fl, 425 Elizabeth Street, Surry Hills

Address listed August 1989

Vintage Movie Group

8 Albert Avenue, Chatswood

Listed June 1987




Waratah Deaf Association

PO Box 1046, Penrith

Ad September 1984

Western Way Centre

17 Alice Street, Auburn

Listed October 1988

Wicked Women

PO Box 305 Redfern

Mention April 1988


88.9 FM

Listed as new June 1988

Wimmin in the Southern Suburbs

Louisa Lawson House, 112 West Botany Street, Arncliffe

Listed January 1989

Women’s Support Group

Gayline/Women’s Healing Centre 263 Bridge Road, Glebe

Listed December 1989




Young Lesbian Collective

593 327

Mention November 1988

Updated: 7 May 2016 by John Witte using listings and mentions in various 1989 gay newspapers and magazines. Please contact Pride History Group if your group was active in 1989, but does not appear here.



1989 Venues

Venue Name







Nightclubs, Bars, Discos


11 – 19 Jamison Street, Sydney


Re-vamped Jamison Street Nightclub


Mention January 1989. Closes September 1989

Boogaloo Night for Women

Level One, 252 Pitt Street, Sydney


Every Wednesday. See The Front or Level One after July.

Women’s night

Ad April 1989


Corner Elizabeth and Cleveland Streets

Robin McCoy “manageress”. March 1989, Lexie manager


The boys are also welcome

February 1988. New Management March 1989. Closes 7th October 1989.


RAS Showgrounds


Miss 3D every Tuesday + Stephen Allkins


Opens December 12th 1989

Dorothy’s Disco

Sneaky Pete’s Bar, Cnr Queen and Harrow Street, Auburn


Every Wednesday + Saturday 7:30 – Midnight


Ad September 1988, new mgt March 1989


33 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

Diva management



24 November 1989

Freezer (Girls Bar)

11 Oxford Street, Paddington




Listed April 1989. Girls Bar closes September 1989.

Front, The (Level One)

252 Pitt Street, Sydney


Same address as Boogaloo Night


Opens 21 July 1989

Grosvenor Club (Taxi Club)

40 Flinders Street, Darlinghurst


Licensed bar and bistro


Ad June 1984;

Grosvenor Club (Zippers Dance Club)

40 Flinders Street, Darlinghurst




Ad for Zippers July 1989

Kakadu Restaurant

163 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

Tommy Brown Host

Restaurant, Dance club, DJ Robert Rasic;


Ad August 1987.

Les Girls

2c Roslyn St, Kings Cross

Apsley Investments

Formerly Carousel Cabaret


First listing September 1980; not listed May 1984; Final show 1 July 1989.

Les Girls

South Sydney Leagues Club, Chalmers Street, Redfern




Opens at new location 29 July 1989


99 Walker Street, North Sydney




Listed December 1989

Midnight Factory

Cnr Batt Street and Regentville Road, South Penrith


Catering for guys and girls. Live shows and disco Friday and Saturday. Fully licensed bar


Listing April 1988


Rear Carrington Hotel, Bourke and Arthur Streets, Surry Hills


Cocktail bar and eatery.


Listed November 1987

Patchs, also see DIVA

33 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

Dawn O’Donnell, Roger Claude Teyssedre, Alex and Abe Saffron. DIVA takes over November 1989

“Sydney’s hottest gay disco”..


From 1976. Under new management 7 December 1985. DIVA management makeover 24 November 1989


11 Rowe Street, Sydney




Listed November 1989

Piper’s Nightspot

800 Hunter Street, Newcastle


Wed, Fri, Sat 6pm – 3am Restaurant, Disco


Previously listed in 1983. No mention in 1984. Ads 1985


Downstairs 124 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

John Buckland, Paul Roberts Managers

Bar and diner.


Opens 2nd December 1987. Closes November 1989


171 Victoria Street, Potts Point




Ad June 1989

Space (Kinselas) + Fruit in Space

Taylor Square


A wild new nightclub. Fruit (gay) on Tuesdays


Ad June 1989. Fuit August 1989


Darlinghurst Road, Kings Cross




Listed December 1989


Penny’s Lane, Kings Cross




Listed December 1989



Albury Hotel

(Coco Restaurant)

(Piano Bar)

(Public Bar)

6 Oxford Street, Paddington

Leigh Jennings and Nanette Theakstone

Public bar, piano bar, live entertainment, Cajun restaurant.


From 28 July 1980

Brittania Hotel

103 Cleveland Street, Chippendale


Live entertainment


April 1985. Hotel Berlin from September 1989

Cricketers Arms Hotel

Botany and Henderson Roads, Alexandria

Margaret and Pam ?managers


Women’s pub

First birthday party November 1988

Exchange Hotel

34 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

Dawn O’Donnell, one of the partners; Elizabeth Court licensee 1984;

New bar Vault. Blitz women only on Tuesdays.


From March 1981

Flinders Hotel

63 Flinders Street, Surry Hills

Allan Mauricesee, Licensee

Public bar, courtyard with pool table, live entertainment, Wed pool competition.


From August 1980. Changes hands December 1987

Golf View Hotel

Rawson Road, Guildford


Saturday nights from 8pm


Listing again March 1988

Hotel Berlin

103 Cleveland Street, Chippendale


Previously the Britannia Hotel


Listed September 1989

Imperial Hotel

 (Jools Cabaret Room)

(Club Fabulous)

35 Erskineville Road Erskineville


Public bar, live entertainment, cabaret room.


Opens 18 July 1986

Merton Estate Hotel (Mo’s)

38 Victoria Road, Roxelle

Sandra Ryan licensee

A women’s and gay men’s club


Listing January 1988

Midnight Shift Tavern

85 Oxford St, Darlinghurst

Licensee Bill Trott

Owner Jim Winslett

Downstairs opens as a bar, upstairs restaurant, cocktail bar and disco.


Re-opens as a tavern 25 February 1987

Newtown Hotel  + Jacks Bar + La Tiara Restaurant

174 King St, Newtown

August 1982 Dawn and Roger Claude deny ‘moving to Newtown’.

Two bars, video DJ, varied entertainment


First ad October 1982. Jacks Bar September 1989

Oxford Hotel + Gilligans

134 Oxford St, Darlinghurst

Peter Whittle, Licensee

Public bar with DJs, Restaurant upstairs;


Opens July 1982. Gilligans opens April 1988.

Paddington Green Hotel (Outpost 182)

Upstairs, 182 Oxford Street, Paddington

Terry Trinick, manager and licensee.

Country bootscoot Mon, Tues, Th; Leather Wed Fr Sat


Listed July 1987

Rex Hotel Kings Cross (Bottoms Up Bar)

Macleay Street, Kings Cross


Public Bar, Bistro and Music


May 1985. Reappears.

Town Hall Hotel Balmain

366 Darling Street, Balmain

Brian Allen and David Viner proprietors 1981

DJs, Live enterainment

Mixed; Womens Music nights;

First ad December 1981;

Unicorn Hotel

(JJ’s Restaurant)

106 Oxford Street, Paddington.

Timothy Berry Licensee,

Live entertainment, DJs, Restaurant, cocktail bar.


From October 1979;


Male Saunas/Sex on Premises

Den Club, The

Arnolds Lane, Darlinghurst. Entrance 97 Oxford Street


“Men’s Club”


Listed November 1987. New Entrance August 1989

King Steam

46 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst


Brand new premises, bigger with better facilities


Re-opens in new location 25 February 1989


83 – 85 Anzac Parade, Kensington

Nick Lorschy (prior1987)



From 1972. Katacombs May 1982


Bookshops, Galleries

The Bookshop Darlinghurst

207 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst




March 1985

The Bookshop Newtown

186 King Street, Newtown




June 1986

Updated: 7  May 2016 by John Witte using listings and mentions in various 1989 gay newspapers and magazines. Please report errors and your references to the Pride History Group.


1989 Community events



If not in Sydney


January 1989


Federal funding of community organisations is announced and includes $135,222 to Glebe House, producers of Streetwise Comics, to create an AIDS educational issue for prisoners.

January 1989


Wellcome Australia markets AZT (aka Zidovudine and Retrovir) through designated AIDS units for patients with AIDS related illnesses. The drug costs $8,000 per year and is prescribed to 700 Australians.

10 January 1989


The AIDS Memorial Quilt is on display at the Convention Centre at the Greetings Koala Hotel in Oxford Street.

17 January 1989


A 12” single of the theme song of the AIDS Council of NSW (ACON) OUT Living OUT Loving OUT Lasting is launched at Kinselas and released nationally on the Safe Sect Record label through Polygram.

21 January 1989


Bacchanalia presents Summer Wipeout – a dance party at the Hordern Pavilion.

21 January 1989


The Gay and Lesbian Studies Conference urges gay and lesbian campus societies demand legitimate studies in homosexuality.

24 January 1989


The AIDS Council of NSW (ACON) calls for greatly increased funding for preventative education, particularly aimed at men having sex with men, but who don’t identify as gay.

31 January 1989


The Bookshop in King Street, Newtown is daubed with anti-gay slogans.

February 1989


30 Transport Police and senior police officials attend a training session on practices and attitudes to gay men. The need for this arose from recent complaints at Central Station.

February 1989


Kings Steam moves from the city to first floor, 38 – 42 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst.

3 February 1989


The 1989 Mardi Gras Festival is launched at the opening of A Fundamental Attack at the Holdsworth Galleries.

3 – 24 February 1989


The Australian Film Institute (AFI) in association with the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras (SGLMG) presents a three week festival of gay films.

4 February 1989


An advertisement for Blue Etchings from Querelle finally appears in the Sydney Morning Herald after the  the paper receives advice from the Anti-Discrimination Board.

5 February 1989


The Mardi Gras Fair Day is moved at the last moment from Prince Alfred Park to Kippax Lake, Moore Park.

6 February 1989


A forum on gays and lesbians in film and TV presented by Keith Howes is held by the Gay and Lesbian Arts Association at the Drama Studios Burton Street, East Sydney.

8 February 1989


Alma May McFarlane, SGLMG Administrator resigns.

9 – 19 February 1989


Kai Tai Chan and Garry Lester stage Blue Etchings from Querelle at the Belvoir Street Theatre.

18 February 1989


Up to 200,000 people watch the annual Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras led by 50 Dykes on Bikes from Art Gallery Road to the Showgrounds. A record 15,000 attend the post parade party.

24 February 1989


The 222 campaign to encourage intravenous drug users to sterilise their needles with bleach is launched by the Australian National Council on AIDS.

24 February 1989


NSW Health Minister, Peter Collins announces $1 million funding for St Vincents Hospital to help it meet increasing demands for AIDS in-patient and outpatient services.

25 February 1989


Sweatbox dance party presented by Meltdown is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

March 1989


Sydney photographer, William Yang presents a talk and slide show night The Face of Buddha at the Belvoir Street Theatre.

March 1989


Leaders of the three main surgeon associations  issue demands, that their members will require any patient they suspect of being gay to be tested for HIV; that they will refuse surgery to those who refuse and they may refuse elective surgery for those who test positive.

March 1989


A National Coalition for Gay Law Reform is formed to add pressure to Tasmania, Queensland and West Australia to reform their anti-gay laws.

March 1989


The Sisters of St Joseph begin preparing an empty convent as a half-way house for up to seven AIDS clients in the coming months, taking pressure off the AIDS unit at the Royal Newcastle Hospital.

March 1989


Telegay, a new gay telephone contact service is launched Australia wide.

March 1989


Dorothys Disco at the corner of Queen and Harrow Roads, Auburn is under new management.

March 1989


Miss 3D’s Glamour World a new gay Tuesday night at BASE night club 11 Jamison Street, City, kicks off.

1 March 1989


The first meeting of a self help group for young people affected by HIV is held at ACON, 68 Sophia Street, Surry Hills.

5 March 1989


The Australian AIDS Memorial quilt is hung as a backdrop for the AIDS Trust Stars of the Australian Opera benefit.

7 March 1989


Larry Kramer’s play The Normal Heart opens for a season directed by Wayne Harrison and starring John O’May and Graham Harvey.

8 March 1989


An exhibition of artworks by the late Michael Horne are held at the Oaklands Gallery, 55 Ross Street, Glebe.

8 March 1989


A meeting at the Heffron Hall, Darlinghurst expresses a need for a gay and lesbian community centre and for SGLMG to investigate how it will be set up and operated.

8 March 1989


Panels from Victoria are added to the Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt and a ceremony is held in front of the new Parliament House. The Quilt is now 100 square metres.

30 March 1989

Blue Mts

The Blue Mountains Triangle, a gay male social group is set up.

April 1989

Burnie Tas

Calls for the compulsory testing of surgery patients by national surgeon organisations, are rejected by State and Federal Health Ministers.

April 1989


Martyn Goddard reports in the Sydney Star Observer (SSO) that tests are showing that HIV develops resistance to AZT.

April 1989


A women’s night begins at Level One, 252 Pitt Street, City every Wednesday night.

1 April 1989


April Fool F.U.N. dance party is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

4 April 1989

Heidelberg Vic.

Ethel May ‘Monte’ Punshon, a lesbian and pioneer of women’s and gay rights in Australia dies aged 106.

10 April 1989


A forum of 150 people at the Teacher’s Federation discuss the future of the SGLMG.

10 April 1989


12 men chanting anti-gay slogans invade a meeting of the Gay and Lesbian Immigration Task Force and are chased off by members of the Task Force.

21 April 1989


Bob Downe’s Disco Show opens at Kinsela’s nightclub.

29 April 1989


The Police and Gay Liaison Unit runs a 24 hour hotline to encourage reports of incidents of violence. Only six calls are received.

29 April 1989


Big Time dance party is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

May 1989



The Dutch delegate to an AIDS conference in San Francisco is detained on arrival for being HIV positive.

May 1989


People Living with AIDS (PLWA) calls for doctors refusing to treat people because of their HIV status, to be struck off.

May 1989


The One Extra Dance Company stages Urban Fairies at the Rocks Theatre.

May 1989


Tony Ayres short film, Cruel Youth screens at the AFI cinema in Paddington.

May 1989


The SGLMG AGM committee election is the first based on competing tickets or teams. The new president is Cath Phillips, vice president is Tom Hatfield and the secretary is Suzanne Brooks. Six Committee members are women.

May 1989


A secret conclave of members of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at Minto overthrow Mother Inferior, reducing him to a novitiate.

22 – 25 April 1989


The Celebration Games organised by Sydney’s Frontrunners and Clover Women’s Group is held at the Botany Athlete Field as the Australian lead up to the 1990 International Gay Games III in Vancouver.

12 May 1989


Building Pride Dance is held at the Hordern Pavilion. $65,000 from the dance goes towards a deposit for a building to house a Mardi Gras Office and Workshop, the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service and the Fitness Exchange.

19 May 1989


Martyn Goddard replaces Tim Carrigan as editor of the Sydney Star Observer.

20 May 1989


Black Party Six is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

21 May 1989


2,000 people led by the Premier, Nick Greiner, walk through Sydney to raise $40,000 for AIDS research.

27 May 1989


Byarmu Pty Ltd and DPA Productions present Karnivale Erotica party at the Hordern Pavilion.

June 1989


Dr Julian Gold announces a link between the Albion Street clinic and the San Francisco General Hospital and consequent local trials of GLQ223 (Compound Q) DDI, hypercine and passive immunotherapy.

June 1989


Professor Gust, the newly appointed Commonwealth Chief Medical Officer, suggests quarantining people infected with HIV.

June 1989


General Peter Gration, Chief of the Defence Force counters the Federal Ombudsman’s attempt to pursue discrimination by stating that if a member of the ADF admits to being homosexual they are “permitted to seek a discharge at their own request.”

June 1989


The ALP and the Greens commit to homosexual law reform as part of their Accord.

June 1989


PLWA criticises St Vincents Hospital for discharging people with AIDS ‘much too soon’, because of a severe shortage of beds.

June 1989


Drag performer, Sonia McMahon, dies of an AIDS related illness.

3 June 1989


Sweatbox dance party, let them eat cake is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

4 June 1989


Pink Ink, publishers of an anthology of lesbian and gay writers hold a fund raiser at the Rose, Shamrock and Thistle Hotel, Evans Street, Rozelle.

4 – 9 June 1989


Members of New York and Canadian ACT-UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) groups take over the opening of the  Fifth International Conference on AIDS .

4 – 9 June 1989


A section of the Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt is unfolded at the Olympic Stadium Velodrome is part of the Fifth International Conference on AIDS.

6 – 17 June 1989


Like is Please With Like, an exhibition of six gay and lesbian artists is held at the Works Gallery, City Art Institute, Greens Road, Paddington.

24 June 1989


Bacchanalia presents Spellbinder dance party at the Hordern Pavilion.

24 June 1989


The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence elevate several new saints – Julie Bates for her work in sex worker and intravenous drug user organisations;  Barry Fitzgerald in honour of the Safe Sex Sluts and Kendall Lovett for his work in gay radio news  and as a reporter for overseas gay newspapers.

30 June 1989


Actor Tony Sheldon claims that an illegal “pink list”, banning gay or gay associated actors is maintained by several television casting directors.

July 1989


Community AIDS/HIV Initiative for Treatment Education, a group of people with HIV/AIDS starts a study of self-treatment usage experiments.

July 1989


Max Bourke, Chief Executive of the Australia Council addresses a public meeting organised by the Gay and Lesbian Artists Association.

July 1989


Anthony Wesmore is appointed Executive Director of Mardi Gras.

1 July 1989


Come to Hell  dance party is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

6 July 1989


A public forum is held to discuss ideas for a new Gay and Lesbian Community Centre. Gender parity for the Committee was adopted.

7-8 July 1989


RAT and Delirium present Unite at the Hordern Pavilion over two nights.

10 July 1989


A special gay premiere of the Torch Song Trilogy film is held at the Academy Twin Cinema on Oxford Street.

14 – 15 July 1989


The Mid-Winter F.U.N. dance party is held at the Hordern Pavilion over two nights.

22 July 1989


The Pollynesians Social Group celebrates its 25th anniversary.

25 July 1989

Roma Q

Five men charged with having sex with one another “against the order of nature” appear in court.

29 July 1989


Long distance cyclist Graeme Milburn completes a 15,500 km fund raising trip around Australia and raises $5,000 and public awareness of AIDS.

August 1989


St Vincents Hospital increases the capacity of the 7th Floor AIDS Ward by 6 beds. It appeals for nurses to staff these beds.

August 1989

Washington DC

The US Court of Appeals rules that the army cannot discharge US Army Sergeant Perry Watkins because of his homosexuality.

August 1989


The Australian Gay and Lesbian Archives finally finds a home after 20 months in storage.

August 1989


After the incarceration of Sydney HIV positive prostitute “Charlene” under the NSW Public Health Act, AIDS activists call for reform of the Act. They claim draconian penalties do not create a co-operative environment to contain AIDS.

August 1989


Activist Brian McGahen presents the case for a licensed club as the basis for a new Community Centre.

August 1989


Wearing “Christian and Gay” T shirts, Fabian Lo Schiavo, David Englebrecht and Prue Borthwick receive holy communion from anti-gay cleric, Sydney’s Anglican Archbishop, Donald Robinson.

August 1989


Fruit, opens at the renovated Space bar at Kinselas night club every Thursday. Victor Li who is involved with the Sweatbox dances promotes the venture and Mandy Smith Mardi Gras workshop artist creates the interior design.

3 August 1989


Pleasure Pact open their new show at the Newtown Hotel Go West Young Drag.

5 August 1989


Paradise Garage … the way it should be … is held at the Warehouse, Danks Street.

12  August 1989


Gay activist, Bruce Belcher aka Sister Rose Incarnate dies

12 August 1989


Bacchanalia present Subterrania at the Hordern Pavilion.

14  August 1989


Anthony Westmore takes up his appointment as the Executive Director of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.

19 August 1989


Koala Deaf Federation, a national organisation for deaf gays and lesbians, holds its first national conference at the Eye Institute Building, Surry Hills.

September 1989


NSW Health Minister, Peter Collins announces the creation of lock ups for people with HIV who persist with unsafe behaviour.

September 1989


50 gays and lesbians picket the Queensland Tourist Commission office in support of five gay men who face long gaol terms in Qld.

September 1989


The Community AIDS Treatment Network is announced by Federal AIDS advisors, doctors and ACON. It will introduce “parallel track” drug trials dispensing with the need for half of the participants to go on a placebo treatment.

September 1989


Sydney DJ Evan Sheppard leads a campaign for the implementation of recommendations to change the Copyright Act allowing record shops to import records if the major record companies don’t release them locally within a “reasonable time”. The present law allows imports for personal use only.

September 1989


The federal Health Minister Neal Blewett launches a new policy White Paper with the major initiatives the government is required to take up through to the 1990s.

September 1989


SGLMG appoints Peter Thornhill, workshop artist, Di Henry Art Director, Gillian Minnervini, Festival Director and Adrian Gough Events Director.

1 September 1989


Jack’s Bar opens at the Newtown Hotel.

2 September 1989


BAT F.U.N. is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

9 September 1989


Bacchanalia present Trash at the Hordern Pavilion.

12 September 1989


Out on Tuesday a series of six lesbian and gay documentaries from the UK, begins on SBS TV.

15 September 1989


SGLMG and RAT present Pride Dance II at the Hordern Pavilion.

October 1989

Burnie Tas.

Tasmania’s Anglican Church votes in favour of decriminalising homosexuality at its state Synod.

October 1989


A bill to de-criminalise homosexuality is introduced into the West Australian parliament by Labor MP John Haldon and backed by Labor premier Peter Dowding.

October 1989


Bristol Myers the manufacturer of the anti-HIV drug ddI, announces it will supply the drug for trials in January 1990.

October 1989


David McDiarmid wins the 1990 Mardi Gras poster competition.

2  October 1989


1,000 fundamentalist Christians in Oxford Street led by Reverend Fred Nile are outnumbered five to one by gays, lesbians and their supporters, when they take part in a Cleansing March of Witness for Jesus aimed at banning the Sydney Mardi Gras.

8 October 1989


CJs nightclub closes with Cindy Pastel’s final show.

15  October 1989


Greg Smith is commissioned as the pastoral leader of the Metropolitan Community Church.

21 October 1989


An international day of protest marking the first anniversary of arrests of gays and lesbians in Hobart’s Salamanca Place is marked in Sydney by a 200 strong march and rally.

21 October 1989


The annual SGLMG Sleaze Ball is held at the Royal Hall of Industries and the Hordern Pavilion. It is the first Mardi Gras party to sell out with 9,000 tickets sold.

24 October 1989


AIDS activist Dr Ralph Deacon dies of AIDS aged 44.

November 1989


Gay man Daniel Franco’s application to become a fosterparent is refused following a ban by the NSW Coalition government on gays and lesbians fostering or adopting children.

November 1989


The One Extra Dance Company loses its Federal subsidy and disbands.

November 1989


A study of nurses who work with AIDS patients by Lydia Bennett of the Sydney College of Advanced Education reveals these nurses suffer social stigma, discrimination and burnout.

November 1989


Changes to the Public Health Act providing for up to six months detention for HIV positive people found to be endangering others is rushed through the state parliament.

November 1989


The conservative government of Qld effectively cuts the funding to the state’s AIDS council by 25%.

4 November 1989


A series of eight radio programmes on AIDS goes to air on Radio 2SER FM.

4 November 1989


The 14th annual Polympics is held at Macquarie University.

11 November 1989


RAT’s dance party, Glitterati is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

13 November 1989


Gay entertainer Tony Vickery dies aged 41 from a heart attack.

26 November 1989


The last service of the Metropolitan Church of the Southern Cross is held following a decision to close the church by Pastor Reverend Gary Walker.

December 1989


Maitraya, a day centre for people with AIDS re-opens in a pair of terraces in Bourke Street, Surry Hills.

December 1989


The Federal Government extends its equal opportunity law to include gays, lesbians and people with HIV.

December 1989


Reverend Fred Nile asks if the NSW Minister for Police would withdraw the permit for the 1990 Mardi Gras parade. Mr Pickering refuses.

December 1989


The first issue Lesbians on the Loose produced by Frances Rand and Jackie Scherer is on sale.

December 1989


Murray McLachlan is awarded Empress of Sydney at the 27th Annual Chameleons Dinner Dance and Award night.

December 1989


The Unicorn Hotel obtains an extended hours of trading licence to 3am Mondays to Saturdays and to midnight Sundays.

1  December 1989


Noel Beckett, a founding member of the 60s social club, the Chameleons, dies.

2 December 1989


Bacchanalia presents Hyperspace 2 at the Hordern Pavilion.

5  December – 2 January 1990


A Decade of Drag, a show where Sydney Drag Queens parade their favourite frocks, is held at Space Kinselas in three shows over December.

9 December 1989


F.U.N. celebrates its first anniversary and last party at the Hordern Pavilion.

12 December 1989


Miss 3D’s Glamor World show runs at the Dome at the RAS showgrounds for a season of Tuesday nights.

15  December 1989


Terry Bell, gay activist and journalist, dies.

16 December 1989


Sweatbox presents Barbarella at the Hordern Pavilion.

31 December 1989


RATs NYE party, Accelerat is held at the Royal Hall of Industries and the Hordern Pavilion.

Updated 31/12/15



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