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


1990 Community groups and organisations 



Date listed




Acceptance Sydney

15 Francis Street, East Sydney/28 Roslyn Street, Elizabeth Bay

Listed December 1979;

Acceptance Phone Counselling

357 45056

Listed October 1990

ACTUP (AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power)

Box A1242, Sydney South

Listed April 1990


Box 359, Wahroonga

Listed September 1990

AIDS Advocate

101/412 Oxford Street, Paddington

Listed December 1989

AIDS Council of NSW

68 Sophia Street, Surry Hills

February 1985

ACON Hunter Branch

PO Box 1081, Newcastle

Listed May 1990

ACON North Coast Branch

Box 63, Lismore

Listed May 1990

AIDS Hotline of the Albion Street Centre

332 4000

January 1989

AIDS Trust of Australia

211 2161

January 1990

Al-Anon Gay Support Group

703 Bourke Street, Surry Hills

Ad January 1987, new location January 1990

Albion Street Clinic

332 4000

March 1985


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

Mentioned May 1980. No listing June 1990.

Anglican Gays

Box 426, Grosvenor Place, Sydney

Listing June 1990. No listing November 1990


150 Albion Street, Surry Hills

May 1985

Antibody Positive Support Group

150 Albion Street, Surry Hills

April 1988

Armidale Gay Society

PO Box 581, Armidale

Listed 11 May 1983

Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations

062 47 3411

Listed April 1990

Australian National Sports Association

PO Box 433, Coogee

Listed March 1988




Being Out Group

33 Wellington Street, Chippendale

Listed February 1990

Blue Mountains PWLA Day Care Centre

2 Station Street, Katoomba

Listed November 1989

Blue Mountains Triangle

Box 216, Blackheath

Listed December 1988. Not listed September 1990

Bobby Goldsmith Foundation

PO Box 97, Darlinghurst

Mention July 1984;

Boomerang Social Club

Box 429, Darlinghurst

Listed March 1979




Castaways Social Group

Box H178, Harris Park

June 1985

Christian Lesbian Collective

Box 98, Enmore

Listed April 1990

Clover Women’s Club

Box 329 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 Support Network

PO Box 415, Darlinghurst

Formed at meeting June 1984

Community Support Network Newcastle

049 29 3464

Listed November 1990

Community Support Network Wollongong

042 752609

Listed November 1990

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

Downstairs Midnight Shift

Listed June 1979

Dreaded Ned’s BBS gay computer bulletin board


Listed February 1990

Dykes on Bikes

550 1623

Were in 1990 parade




Eagle One

745 3190

Listing November 1988

Enola Gay

Box 380, Broadway

Signature 1988




The Family

2 Sunbeam Avenue, Croydon 2136

Ad September 1985

Fitness Exchange

33 Wellington Street, Chippendale

New location October 1981

Flamingo Society

Box R47, Rhodes

Listing January 1988

Four Seasons Social Group

PO Box 1654, Coffs Harbour

Listing November 1985;

Freelance Bowling League

Rushcutters Bowl, 110 Bayswater Road, R B

Listed April 1983

Friends of PWAs

150 Albion Street, Surry Hills

Listed December 1988

Fun & Esteem Extreme Please Co

211 0499 c/- ACON

Formed September 1988

Fun & Esteem Project

283 2599

Listed November 1990





319 2799

Ad May 1984;

Gay and Jewish Alliance

Box 1288, Darlinghurst

Listed February 1990 – renamed September 1990

Gay and Lesbian Arts Association

PO Box 786, Darlinghurst

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 Association (GALA)

Box 248, Holme Building

Sydney University

Listed May 1988

Gay and Lesbian Association (GALA)

Union Post Box,

Newcastle University

Listed June 1990

Gay and Lesbian Immigration Task Force

2nd Floor, 300 Sussex Street, Sydney

May 1985; renamed July 1987;

Gay and Lesbian Line

319 2799

Listed April 1990

Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby

PO Box 9, Darlinghurst

Forms 21 April 1988

Gayline (GLCS)

02319 2799

Ad January 1987

Gay Radio Information News Service (GRINS)

PO Box 380, Broadway

Listed July 1984

Gay Solidarity Group


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




Haere Mai

047 82 1359

Listing April 1990

Hell bent

Box 305, Redfern

Launched October 14 1990

Harbour City Amateur Wrestling Club

Box 433, Coogee

Listed July 1988





33 Wellington Street, Chippendale

Listed 16 May 1983

Illawarra HIV Support Group

042 75 5974

Listed June 1990

Inside Out

PO Box 380 Broadway/25 Douglas Av Perth

Listed 13 October 1983

Jews and Gentiles

Box 1288 Darlinghurst

Listed September 1990





398 1323

Article set up in December 1989

Karumah Day Centre

Citadel Hall, Cnr Grainger and Pearson Streets, Lambton/58 Gipps Street, Carrington

October 1989. New address

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

33 Wellington Street, Chippendale

Listed January 1985




Lambda Ministries

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 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

Living Well Support Groups

c/- ACON

Listed April 1990

Long Yang

Box 263, Canberra

Listed September 1989




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

Mullumbimby AIDS Resource Centre

Box 679, Mullumbimby

Listed December 1989




National Centre in HIV

St Vincents Medical Centre, 376 Victoria Rd, Darlinghurst

Listed September 1990

Newcastle Gay Waves


Listed June 1990

Northern Rivers Gaywaves/Gay News


Listed again June 1988. Gay News June 1990.

Northshore Voltairians

Club Bar, Cammeray Hotel, 474 Miller Street

Ad May 1984

NUAA (NSW Users and AIDS Associations)

357 1666

Listed June 1990





Box 786, Darlinghurst

Launched September 26 1990


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

Penrith PLWA Support Group

Penrith Youth Centre

Listed April 1990

People Living with AIDS

68 Sophia Street, Surry Hills

Forms 28 September 1988


264 8313

Listed February 1990

Pollynesians Social Club

GPO Box 2935

Listed August 1980

Positive Women Support Group

283 3222 ACON

Listed April 1990

Powerhouse Social Club

2/11 Edward Street, Ryde

Listed July 1989

Pride Initiative

PO Box 1064, Darlinghurst

Listed December 1989




Queer TV

Box 636, Newtown

Listed November 1990

The Quilt Project

PO Box 350, Darlinghurst

Founded 23 October 1988




Rape Crisis

PO Box 188, Drummoyne

Listed July 1986

Rights for All Male Sex Workers

Box 956, Kings Cross

Listed April 1990

Ringed Men

Box 712, Rozelle

Listed November 1990




Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence

Box 426, Grosvenor Place

Listed August 1982

Sex Workers Outreach Project

391 Riley Street, Surry Hills

Listed November 1990

SM Downunder

418 6671

Listed July 1989

Social Committee of Recovering Alcoholics and Addicts (SCRAAGL)

Box 181 Strawberry Hills

Listed February 1990

South Asian Lesbians

Box 817, Newtown

Listed June 1990

South Pacific Motor Club

23 Sloane Street, Newtown, 888 Bourke Street, Zetland

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

South Sydney Women’s Centre (Women’s Health Centre)

231 Abercrombie Street, Chippendale

Listed again October 1990

Sydney Day Centre (Maitraya)

396 Bourke Street, Surry Hills

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

Sydney Front Runners

Centennial Park, Oxford Street entrance

Mentioned May 1987

Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Association Inc/Ltd

Workshop, 15-19 Boundary Street, Rushcutters Bay

Changes to Ltd after March 1990

Sydney Gay and Lesbian Sports Association

33 Wellington St, Chippendale

Ad January 1985. Name change November 1988

Sydney Gay Centre

33 Wellington St, Chippendale

Mentioned October 1981

Sydney Gay Community Publishing

1st Fl, 292 Crown Street, Darlinghurst

Listed January 1989

Sydney Network

818 5135

Listed November 1987

Sydney Rams Bowling League

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 Spanking Society

Box 386, Potts Point

Listed November 1990

Sydney Spokes

Frank 664 1251

Mention September 1986




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




Unity Community Group

Box 1097, Wollongong

Listed May 1981




Village Voice Australia

1st Floor 135 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

New address January 1990

Vintage Movie Group

8 Albert Avenue, Chatswood

Listed June 1987




Western Way Centre

637 3902

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


550 4336

Listed September 1990




Young Lesbian Support Group


Mention November 1988; New name October 1990

Updated: 15 May 2016 by John Witte using listings and mentions in various 1990 gay and lesbian newspapers and magazines. Please contact Pride History Group if your group was active in 1990, but does not appear here.


1990: Venues

Venue Name






Nightclubs, Bars, Discos

Base II

Dome, 1 Driver Avenue, The Showground




Opens May 8th 1990

Bentley Bar (Bentley Hotel) + Club Bent

Cnr Crown and Campbell Streets, Darlinghurst




Ad March 1990

Colosseum: thumpy pumpy

30 Kellet Street, Kings Cross


Mondays and Tuesdays 9 pm – 3am


November 1990

DCM (Don’t Cry Mama)

33 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst


Formerly “Formerly Patchs”


Listed May 1990


1 Driver Avenue, The Showground


Miss 3D every Tuesday + Stephen Allkins


Opens December 12th 1989. Not listed April 1990

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. No mention May 1990

Front, The (Level One)

252 Pitt Street, Sydney


Same address as Boogaloo Night


Opens 21 July 1989. No mention March 1990

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

Hideaway Bar

Queen and Harrow Roads, Auburn




Listed January 1990. No mention March 1990


50 Hunter Street, Sydney




Listing October 1990

Kakadu Restaurant

163 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

Tommy Brown Host

Restaurant, Dance club, DJ Robert Rasic;


Ad August 1987. No mention March 1990


Space + Fruit in Space

Company B

Sugar Shack

Kitsch Thursdays

Taylor Square


A wild new nightclub. Fruit (gay) on Tuesdays


Ad June 1989. Fruit August 1989. Sugar Shack 1990. Company B 1990. No mention Space April 1990.

Les Girls

South Sydney Leagues Club, Chalmers Street, Redfern




Opens at new location 29 July 1989


99 Walker Street, North Sydney




Listed December 1989. No mention April 1990

Oneiro + Fetishe on Thursdays

271 King Street, Newtown




Opens 13 November 1990

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

Patchs/Formerly Patchs

33 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

New owner, new management.

“Sydney’s hottest gay disco”..


From 1976. New owners January 1990. Name change “formerly” April 1990. Becomes DCM


273 Crown Street, Darlinghurst




Listed November 1989. New location March 1990

Piper’s Nightspot

800 Hunter Street, Newcastle


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


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

Site Highdrogen Thursdays

171 Victoria Street, Potts Point




Ad June 1989. Re-launched 29th March


238 Crown Street, East Sydney


Body Heat


Ad April 1990


Darlinghurst Road, Kings Cross




Listed December 1989. Not listed May 1990


Penny’s Lane, Kings Cross




Listed December 1989. Not listed 1990.


Albury Hotel

 (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

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. No mention March 1990

Hotel Berlin

103 Cleveland Street, Chippendale


Previously the Britannia Hotel


Listed September 1989

Imperial Hotel

 (Jools Cabaret Room)

(Club Fabulous)

Prasit’s Thai Restaurant

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

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.

Rex Hotel Kings Cross (Bottoms Up Bar)

Macleay Street, Kings Cross


Public Bar, Bistro and Music


May 1985. Reappears.

Royal George Hotel (Georgie’s Girls Club)

Cnr King and George Streets, Sydney




Listing August 1990

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


106 Oxford Street, Paddington.

Timothy Berry Licensee,

Live entertainment, DJs, Restaurant, cocktail bar.


From October 1979;

 Male Saunas/Sex on Premises

Den Club, The

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

Les McDonald



March 1985; Les crops up in Dec 1990;

The Bookshop Newtown

186 King Street, Newtown




June 1986. Not listed 1990

The Feminist Bookshop

315 Balmain Road, Lilyfield




Listed March 1990

Updated: 15 May 2016 by John Witte using listings and mentions in various 1990 gay and lesbian newspapers and magazines. Please report errors and omissions to the Pride History Group.


1990 Chronology of community events




January 1990


Australia’s AIDS Councils boycott the 6th International Conference on AIDS in protest against US travel restrictions on people with HIV.

January 1990


The AIDS Council of NSW (ACON) expands its services using increased government funding to include extra Beat Outreach workers, extra regional staff and new ACON offices in Goulburn Street.]

January 1990


Social groups organiser and charity fundraiser, Donnie Smith dies.

January 1990


The national convention of Young Liberals calls on all states to decriminalise homosexuality.

19 January 1990


Patchs re-opens after its new owners complete an extensive face-lift.

26-27 January 1990


The 4th Australian Gay Games, “The Friendly Games”, is staged by the AFAA.

27 January 1990


Bacchanalia: Disco Inferno is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

February 1990


Living Clean and Sober is formed.

February 1990


Sue Thompson, a career public servant is appointed Sydney’s new Police Gay Liaison Officer.

February 1990


Robert Ariss, convenor of People Living with AIDS (PLWA), claims people with HIV are dying because of restrictions limiting use of AZT only to people with full blown AIDS.

February 1990


Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras announces changes to the parade with the assembly point moved to Macquarie Street.

1 February 1990


The 1990 Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras is opened by Professor Di Yerbury, Vice Chancellor of Macquarie University, at the Belvoir Street Theatre.

1 February 1990


Most of the Australian AIDS Memorial Quilt is exhibited at the Powerhouse Museum.

6, 13 February 1990


Pink Ink presents two readings of lesbian and gay writers at the Harold Park Hotel.

7 February 1990


Blood and Honour a new play about racism and illness by Alex Harding previews at the Belvoir Street Theatre.

8 February 1990


The 1990 Gay and Lesbian Film Week at the AFI Cinema Paddington, commences.

12 February 1990


ACON re-locates to 188 Goulburn Street, Darlinghurst.

14 February 1990


A public meeting to decide on the form of the organisation behind the proposed Pride Centre is held.

24 February 1990


Mardi Gras Fair Day is held in Bi-Centennial Park, Glebe.

March 1990


Gary Pye, the founder of Acceptance, dies of AIDS.

March 1990


A new law is proclaimed which extends domestic violence legislation. Anyone harassed, physically threatened or molested can now take out a court order to impose conditions and restrict another person’s behaviour.

March 1990


The Federal National Party calls for a ban on government funding of gay and lesbian arts events is rejected by the shadow Liberal arts minister, Chris Puplick.

March 1990


The NSW Minister for Tourism, the National Party’s Gary West, orders the NSW Tourism Commission to remove material about the Mardi Gras from its premises and computer data bases.

March 1990


A new venue, the Bentley Bar, opens on the corner of Crown and Campbell Streets.

3 March 1990


Gay & Lesbian Rights Lobby organises a march to protest against the rise of anti-gay violence.

21 March 1990


Peter Brider, former owner of the Flinders Hotel, dies of AIDS.

15 March 1990


Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras Association (SGLMG) will become a company following a special general meeting.

April 1990


The Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service (GLCS) withdraws from the Pride community centre initiative over disagreements with its decision to establish a licenced club.

April 1990


Gerry Courtenay, President of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Sports Association announces Sydney’s bid for the 1994 Gay Games IV.

April 1990


Popular female impersonator Tracey Lee dies aged 56.

2 April 1990


Gay activist Brian McGahen dies.

8 April 1990


The new Pride Club at 58a Flinders Street holds a “warming” for the community.

9 April 1990


The NSW Police Minister, Ted Pickering announces extra police to combat anti-gay violence in the Darlinghurst area while launching the Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby Streetwatch Report.

9 April 1990


The GLRL Streetwatch Report  is launched and makes a number of recommendations, including that the Anti-Discrimination Act be amended to outlaw anti-gay vilification.

10 April 1990


80 people meet to form AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACTUP). It advocates non-violent direct action to end the AIDS crisis.

11 April 1990


The NSW Anti-Discrimination Board finds widespread discrimination against lesbians. It advocates education and legislative change for it to end.

21 April 1990


Ratmania “dance ringside – no holds barred” party is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

27 April 1990 


The first public demonstration by the Sydney branch of ACT-UP is held to coincide with a meeting of ADEC (Australian Drug Evaluation Committee) at the Department of Community Services and Health 333 Kent Street for failing to consider the drug AZT.

30 April 1990


The Pride Steering Committee vacates the High Club.

May 1990


National People Living With AIDS Coalition sets up an office at the ACON Resource Centre.

May 1990


The support and social group Asians and Friends, is formed.

May 1990


SGLMG Ltd writes to the Director of Public Prosecutions, requesting a review of a coroner’s decision to commit seven youths to trial for manslaughter. In January they had lured Richard Johnson to a public toilet where he was bashed to death.

May 1990


Bill Whittaker is elected as President of the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations.

May 1990


Patchs has a name change – DCM.

5 May 1990


Sweatbox Sign of the Times Dance Party is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

9 May 1990


A “Meet the Police Night” is held at the Imperial Hotel.

12 May 1990


A Boys Own Dance Party is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

19 May 1990


The inaugural Mr Australia Drummer finals are held at the Yarralumla Woolshed. Clive Platman from Melbourne is the winner.

19-20 May 1990


The first NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Conference is attended by 80 people. 18 workshops covered violence and bashing to adoption.

20 May 1990


Oz Bears begin meeting at the SPMC Headquarters each Sunday.

27 May 1990


ACTUP demonstrates at Parramatta gaol to protest against legislation proscribing the distribution of condoms, bleach and clean fits in prisons.

31 May 1990


The Federal Minister for Community Services and Health, Brian Howe approaches the Australian National Council on AIDS, seeking advice on how best to encourage AIDS drug trials in Australia. He criticises Wellcome Australia for not applying for approval to widen the use of AZT.

June 1990


Gay & Lesbian Rights Lobby begins the Whistle Project as part of a new anti-violence project.

June 1990


Terry Goulden is appointed General Manager of Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras.

June 1990


David “Dot” Wilkins is elected first president of the Sydney Lesbian and Gay Community Centre Ltd. (The Pride Initiative)

June 1990


7 people are arrested and charged after an ACT-UP demonstration outside the US consulate.

1 June 1990


Gay activist, Richard Wilson, is murdered.

1 June 1990


Paul O’Grady MLC, is the first person to publically acknowledge he is gay while he is a member of parliament in an interview with the Sydney Star Observer.

16 June 1990


Dance Indulgence II Headache is held at the Hordern Pavilion.

18 June 1990


The Community Coalition Consensus wins all 14 positions on the board of Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras Ltd

19 June 1990


Stars of the Australian Opera Concert raises $50 000 for the AIDS Trust

24 June 1990


The Reverend Gary Walker is inducted as the new Pastor of the Metropolitan Community Church Sydney.

27 June 1990


The Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby holds a public meeting to launch the Whistle Project which aims to encourage gays men and lesbians to carry a whistle to use whenever they witness or are the victim of an assault.

2 July 1990


A video version of 2SER-FM’s weekly Wild GALS  is transmitted as part of a series of Community Access Television test broadcasts.

7 July 1990


The Dream Corporation dance party is held at the Darling Harbour Exhibition Hall No 5.

16 July 1990


Gay activist, Paul Young, dies.

29 July 1990


Artist Allan Booth dies.

August 1990


Australian Drug Evaluation Committee recommends approval for wider use of AZT.

August 1990


Fourth National Conference on AIDS is held.

August 1990


An ACT-UP demonstration is held at the National AIDS Conference.

4 August 1990


The 1990 Gay Games III and Cultural Festival is opened.

7 August 1990


ADB President Steve Mark proposes to the NSW Government that the Anti-Discrimination Act be amended to include the ground of homosexual vilification.

10 August 1990


The SGLMG is a party to a conference called by the Liquor Administration Board (LAB), which will consider the future of dance parties at the Showground. At present all Showground dance parties have been banned following a decision of the LAB.

25 August 1990


The Family Fancy Dress Party is held at the UNSW Roundhouse, Kensington.

25 August 1990


Gays Living Out West (GLOW) holds its first social function at the North Rocks Community Hall.

15 Sept 1990


Blackwattle Press launches Denis Gallagher’s These Tattoos, Gary Dunne As If Overnight and Sasha Soldatow’s Rock’n’roll Sally.

29 Sept 1990


Gay playwright Richard Barrett’s play Words of One Syllable opens at Belvoir Street Theatre.

30 Sept 1990


Patrick White dies, aged 78

October 1990


Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras Ltd begins the Positively Pink List, a data base for people seeking skilled arts personnel.

October 1990


Peter Vanzella is elected Treasurer and President of the Bobby Goldsmith Foundation.

October 1990


ACON’s Executive Director, Don Baxter, calls for an overhaul of Australia’s drug trials and treatments system to provide faster access to drugs and more drug trials.

October 1990


A group of 14-20 year olds begin work on a community video project which will challenge homophobia, discrimination and violence against gay men and lesbians. The project was sparked by the bashing murder of Richard Johnson in Alexandria Park in early 1990.

October 1990


The GLRL calls for the police Gay Liaison Group to be re-established.

1 October 1990


20 people are arrested at Reverend Fred Nile’s rally at Kings Cross.

17 October 1990


State Member for Bligh, Clover Moore, is supplied with 25 allegations of police misconduct during a protest against Rev Fred Nile and calls for all charges to be dropped.

22 October 1990


A silent demonstration sponsored by the Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby and Rights for All Male Sexworkers (RAMS) is held outside the Dowling Street Courts to protest against police action during the Festival of Light’s Kings Cross Jesus march.

25 October 1990


Ludwig Gertsch, gay venue operator is reported as missing.

November 1990


Sydney AIDS Prospective Study predicts approximately 25% of people diagnosed as HIV+ will develop AIDS-related illness after 5 years.

November 1990


15th annual Pollympic Games is held at the R.A.N. Sports Field, Randwick.

November 1990


Warren Abeshouse, gay composer wins 2 awards in the composition section of 1990 Sydney Eisteddford.

November 1990


Community Access Television (CAT-TV) announces formation of QUEER-TV, a forum for gay & lesbian concerns.

November 1990


New gay club, Oneiro, opens in Newtown.

November 1990

New York

Vito Russo, cinema writer & gay activist, dies from an AIDS-related illness.

November 1990

Washington D.C.

United States Congress removes bans on gay & lesbian immigrants & visitors which had been in place since 1952. A ban in place for 3 years on people with HIV is also lifted.

November 1990


Anglican gay group, AngGays, disbands.

November 1990


The Supreme Court sentences two youths for the bashing murder of Richard Johnston at a beat in Alexandria last January.

7 November 1990


The Sydney Gay & Lesbian Chorus is formed.

10 November 1990


Denis Maloney, photographer & producer of Golden Aussie calendars featuring surf lifesavers, dies.

21 November 1990


Colin Fawcett is elected president of the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras.

 24-25 November 1990


3rd National Living Well Conference is organised by National People Living With AIDS Coalition.

December 1990


A mobile police station begins operating at Taylor Square on Thursday, Friday & Saturday nights for a three month trial.

December 1990


The NSW Young Liberal Movement rejects calls to ban or restrict the annual Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras.

December 1990


General Manager of Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras, Cath Phillips, lodges a formal complaint with the NSW Anti-Discrimination Board against the General Manager of the Darling Harbour Authority, for refusing to allow the Mardi Gras parade to terminate in Darling Harbour.

14 December 1990


Danny Vadasz’s, Feeling Our Way, a book of interviews with 100 gay men in relationships is launched.

Updated: 11 May 2016 by John Witte using listings and mentions in various 1990 gay and lesbian newspapers and magazines. Please contact Pride History Group if we have missed any significant event or made an error. Please attach a reference for each error or omission.