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Opening Subway City


For the past fifteen years Bill has been running Subway City. “Laurie Williams, who was an icon in Birmingham, and one of the founders of the Nightingale and a very clever and highly camp man, had a club called The Club, which is now the club I own, . I’d done a deal with Laurie a few years before his retirement and I advanced him some of the money, that I’d take those premises, because I felt there should be an alternative to the actual gay village, which was there by this time, in those days 15 years ago there were a lot of people for whom anonymity was more important than anything. Consequently, I developed that club the same as the Dorchester, where the most successful night would be a Wednesday for students, and a Friday night for rock and Indie, and a very successful gay night on a Saturday and Thursday. I’d run free coaches from the gay village, when I brought gay people purely on gay nights. It was very successful for people out of town and people whose anonymity was important. I still think today anonymity is very important and we should always respect anonymity. Some people think ‘Just come out and it’s all over’; it is not all over, I’m a firm believer that people should come out if they want to, when they’re ready and only when they’re ready, and sometimes not at all.”

Contributed by: Bill Gavan, 56

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