Joiners Arms redevelopment must include LGBTQ nightclub, council rules

Decision by Tower Hamlets council thought to be first time the sexual orientation of a venue’s target market has been condition of planning approval

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Joiners Arms

The redevelopment of a popular gay bar in east London into a complex of luxury apartments must include an LGBTQ club for at least 25 years, councillors have ruled, in a landmark decision designed to stem the “shocking” closure of gay venues in the UK.

Tower Hamlets council voted unanimously that the demolition of the Joiners Arms – which counted Alexander McQueen, Rufus Wainwright and Sir Ian McKellen among its regulars – could only go ahead if the development that replaced it contained a late-night LGBTQ venue.

Photo By Ewan Munro from London, UK (Joiners’ Arms, Shoreditch, E2Uploaded by Oxyman) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons