20 Years On, Mancs Are Still Bi

20 years to the day...

20 years to the day…

Manchester-based bi organisation BiPhoria is celebrating its 20th birthday – their first social / support evening for bisexual folk and those who think they might be bi was held on the 1st September 1994.

It’s the UK’s longest-running bisexual group: there were others before it, but those have fallen by the wayside in the intervening decades.

BiPhoria on the Manchester demo

The group is active socially, academically, educationally and politically

Group convenor Jen Yockney told BiMedia, “My first time along at the group was three months later at the December 1994 meeting. I think it was fortunate both in the enthusiasm and commitment of the volunteers who have been there over the years keeping it alive, and also in being a mixed group in a city that has a vibrant queer culture.”

Manchester’s queer culture hasn’t always helped the group: the city council is proud of its progressive record on lesbian and gay rights in the 80s but had the non-existence of bisexuality as a matter of council policy in the 90s and 00s.

At the time the group formed many bi groups were gendered – men’s or women’s bi spaces – but the early 90s was when the bi movement in the UK started to get to grips with gender diversity and building welcoming spaces regardless of gender identity.

BiPhoria has been the cornerstone to work including bi social and support spaces, political activism (lobbying local and national government as well as highlighting biphobia on the local gay scene), and research publications on bi needs and mental health. Earlier this year the group led the Manchester LGBT demo about the Sochi winter Olympics for half of the march, alternating with the Lesbian & Gay Foundation.

Tomorrow, BiPhoria will celebrate its 20th anniversary meeting. We expect there will be cake.

Happy birthday BiPhoria. Give ’em a birthday retweet on Twitter here.

 

Meet bis in Manchester, Southampton, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Brighton and London!

local groups

September is here, with a host of meetups for bisexual folk around the country coming up.

local groupsTuesday sees the monthly meeting of Manchester BiPhoria, at the LGF community centre on Richmond Street from 7.30pm sharp.

This is the 20th anniversary of their first meeting – so something like their 240th monthly social-support space for bis in the North West. An amazing record.

It’s also the night that Southampton Bi Group get together.

Wednesday is Edinburgh Bi & Beyond. 7pm-9pm at the LGBT Centre at 9 Howe Street.

Thursday sees bi meets in Cardiff and Brighton, both starting at 6.30pm.

For info about Bi Cardiff contact bicardiff@yahoo.co.uk or text 07982 308812; for Brighton BothWays see their website here.

Finally Saturday is the monthly meet of Bi Coffee London, at Spitalfields Market (coffee shop), from 3pm. More info here.

Bis at Manchester Pride: it’s not over!

Today was parade day at Manchester LGBT Pride, but the bi visibility carries on for another two days with a bi info stall in the Lifestyle Expo area of the festival.

Drop by and say hi to the folks from local group BiPhoria who are celebrating their group’s 20th anniversary in a few days.

The word on the purple street is that they are nearly out of their supply of freebie BCN magazines, but still have plenty of copies of their own excellent bi ‘coming out and staying out’ guide Getting Bi in a Gay/Straight World.

ShoutOut talks Bi Visibility with BiVisibles

Shout Out Awards 2013

Bristol’s ShoutOut LGBT Awards last year had to drop their bi category due to a lack of nominations

This week’s ShoutOut radio show – the LGBT programme for Bristol, Glastonbury and surrounding areas – put Bi Visibility Day into focus.

Nick and Jo from BiVisible Bristol talked about their group’s plans for a community event for this year’s Bi Visibility Day, with help from the local LGBT Forum and host venue the Phoenix. They also talk about the group’s work and bi life.

Hear more here.

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