Theres an alternative social scene emerging in Stoke Newington, which now
boasts four gay venues, all very different from each other.
Due South, managed by Ylanda and situated on Stoke Newington High
Street, has dominated the London girly scene for some five years, hosting one of
successful women only nights every Thursday night, and offering regular karaoke nights and
discos at other times. With a party room and a beer garden, Due South is a truly fun
Further down the High Street, towards Dalston, youll find Krystals
- an altogether different kind of place with a stage, flowers that wouldnt disgrace
the Chelsea flower show, disco balls and chandeliers. A high camp theatre. Owned by
Richard and Kathryn, this venue is well mixed - gay men, gay girls, students and a local
straight crowd all pack in to enjoy a varied entertainment bill hosted by the self-styled
Diva of Dalston, Miss Demeanour. Krystals has just celebrated its first birthday,
and it looks set fair to be around for a long time to come.
Coming off the main drag (pun intended) and heading towards Albion Road, youll find
the Londesborough in Barbauld Road, also known as the Route 73 Cabaret
Bar. Run by Sean, this is a gay boozer, with pool in the upper bar area, and a well-used
darts board tucked away in the corner. The ladies darts team plays at home every Tuesday
night, when the bar hosts the ultra camp Bonsai Bingo. The Londesborough offers a full and
very varied entertainment bill, giving the punter everything from Friday nights
classic country and western disco to a monthly ska, reggae and 2-tone night, with a
regular Sunday night drag cabaret and competitive killer pool on Thursdays.
The fourth venue, Blush, is situated on the north side of Stoke
Newington, in Cazenove Road Road. A stylish cafe, with two bars, a pool table, a party
room and a delightful garden, Blush, run by Siobhan, offers top-quality live jazz and funk
every Sunday afternoon and is fast gaining a reputation for its excellent Sunday brunch
and for its regular art exhibitions. A lovely bright place, Blush is definitely a
meet-the-pals venue for drinks and a chat, with a mixed customer base and an everyone
All the venues have a pro-active fund-raising and awareness-raising element, particularly
around health issues affecting the gay community in the area, and recently helped
to raise more than £8,000 for the Immune Development Trust in lslington, which offers
alternative and holistic treatment for those affected by HIV, and the Globe Centre in Mile
Sean Traynor is licensee at the Londesborough, member of the British Institute of
Inn-keeping and active member of Stoke Newington Pubwatch.
THE Rio is featuring THE
GAY AND LESBIAN FILM FESTIVAL ON TOUR with two double bills on Sunday 22 and
On Sunday 22 theres a programme of gay shorts, Cock and Bull
Stories, Including Back Room, Gifts, War Story, Doors Cut Down (3.15) and at 4.55 a
90m feature film Water Drops on Burning Rocks directed by François Ozon, 90m.
On Sunday 29 July theres a programme of lesbian shorts,
Tltbits (3.30) featuring Her Urge, Entrevue, Atomic Sake and Bargain Lingerie
followed by Jamb Babbits feature But Im a Cheerleader, 89m (5.00). Double bill
price £6.50 (concs £5).
is available for hire
Please ring for details