St James Street has long been identified as an area with a high concentration of facilities for lesbian women and gay men, and many from the LGBT communities choose to live in the area adjacent to the Kemptown seafront.
Recently there have been calls to have the area designated as they Gay Village of Brighton. A community at ease with itself and with others does not require such a designation. It would set a precedent that many have resisted over many years. I recall the National Front trying to label the Palmeira Square area as the “Jewish neighbourhood” in Hove. While no direct comparison would be appropriate, it does allow others with divisive and dangerous tendencies to scapegoat and target its residents.
And by designating an area for one particular section of our community, there is the unintended consequence of excluding others who have long had it as their home or those who wish to make it their home.
I want to see the whole of Brighton and Hove being the area where lesbian women and gay men feel at home, where they may feel safe and secure, and where they and their neighbours can enjoy the distinct qualities of the diverse communities who enrich this City.