It's been a pretty bleak time for London's LGBTQ venues in recent years, what with the closure of The Joiner's Arms in Hackney last year and The Black Cap in Camden earlier this year. But now we've finally got some good news! Following a petition launched back in March by campaign group RVT Future, the Royal Vauxhall Tavern has officially been granted status as a Grade II-listed building, making it the first UK building to be listed because of its significance for LGBTQ history and heritage. The pub is one of London's longest standing LGBTQ pubs and has played a huge role in the capital's queer culture since the 1940s. It was bought by Austrian property development company Immovate last year, and RVT Future has been pushing to get the pub listed to make it harder for the developers to knock it down or significantly alter the building.
But RVT Future says its work isn't finished just yet. Campaign manager Rob Holley said: 'If Immovate don’t think they can make the Tavern work as a listed pub, we invite them to open discussions about a community buy-out. Sell it to a group of people who actually have faith in the commercial viability of this phenomenal venue. We have the means to do this and some exciting ideas about how the RVT could be improved for everybody.' We'll drink to that!
The Royal Tavern will be open from 7pm today if you want to go and raise a glass with the folks behind the campaign.
Or find more ways you can help save our city.