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Margaret Thatcher’s campaign to save Soho’s gay institutions

She’s back, has had a change of heart on Section 28 and is now a cabaret sensation in ‘Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho’. She’s even campaigning to save Soho’s gay landmarks. Here, Maggie reveals the ones to catch while you can

By Margaret Thatcher
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Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
© Rob Greig Time Out

Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
© Rob Greig Time Out

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Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
© Rob Greig Time Out

Margaret Thatcher
© Rob Greig Time Out

Advertising
Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
© Rob Greig Time Out

Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
© Rob Greig Time Out

Advertising
Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
© Rob Greig Time Out

Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
© Rob Greig Time Out

Advertising
Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
© Rob Greig Time Out

Hello, dears. Margaret Thatcher here! As I explain in my show, ‘Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho’, after getting lost in Soho on the eve of the vote for Section 28, I changed my mind on LGBT rights, switched from being prime minister to cabaret superstar, and became a bona fide gay icon!

But now, some of Soho’s gay landmarks are – like a therapy patient who won’t let go of a grudge – struggling to avoid closure. And it’s my job to tell you which ones you should visit… Before it’s too late!

1. G-A-Y

Hangouts don’t come much gayer than G-A-Y (named after its founder Geoffrey Alan York who won the coin toss against his business partner Quentin Ulrika Edward Eric Reynolds). Not only can you dance to the records of Kylie Minogue, sing along to the records of Kylie Minogue and drink very affordably priced drinks (while listening to the records Kylie Minogue), you can also see live performances by the best artists in pop. Well, not all of them, but I’m sure my invitation is in the post.

Goslett Yard, WC2H 0EA

2. The King’s Arms

If you like something less showy, this lovely little pub is also Soho’s premier bar for bears. Seriously, the faces in here are hairier than Germaine Greer’s armpits.

23 Poland St, W1F 8QJ

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3. The Gay Hussar

Some say this isn’t a gay venue at all, just a restaurant frequented by left-wing politicians (and the location for this photoshoot). But look at the name. It isn’t called The Heterosexual Hussar, is it? However, you could also try the traditionally Conservative Carlton Club instead, which definitely is a gay venue! After all, there’s nothing more traditionally Conservative than being a closeted homosexual.

2 Greek St, W1D 4NB

4. Soho Hotel

Soho doesn’t just cater for exciting gay singletons; there are also gay wedding venues where you and your partner can resign yourself to a life of drudging obligation (sorry, Denis, but it’s true). This five-star hotel caters for nuptials of all shapes and sizes, just so long as the shape is extravagant and the size is expensive.

4 Richmond Mews, W1D 3DH

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5. Fifty & Dean

Now you’re married, why not pick up some toys? Be as sadomasochistic with your loved one as I was with the North East. From corsets and thongs to gimp masks and handcuffs, Fifty & Dean caters for all your leather needs (except if you’re looking for sofa covers – in which case, you want DFS).

50 Old Compton St, W1D 4UB

6. Milkbar

Phew! After all that, we need a refreshing drink. And although I took it away in the ’70s, I’m giving it back now. Have a pint of milk, dear, before I snatch it off you again.

3 Bateman St, W1D 4AG

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