London Lesbian and Gay Switchboard: The telephone number that helped make gay okay

Forty years of counselling callers from all over the world has given London Lesbian and Gay Switchboard a frontline view of changing attitudes to homosexuality. Its volunteers tell Nick Duerden (The Independent) why they'll carry on listening.

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A call came through to the London Lesbian and Gay Switchboard the other day from a heterosexual man wanting to talk about some sexual problems he had been experiencing with his girlfriend. Andy Davies, a long-term volunteer here and currently the Switchboard’s secretary, lent a sympathetic ear, while waiting for what he presumed was the inevitable coda – an awkward confession of a gay affair on the side. These sorts of calls to the LLGS are, after all, increasingly common. But the confession didn’t come.

“It seems he simply wanted someone to talk to, and of course that’s precisely what we’re here for,” Davies says, smiling genially.

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Read more at www.independent.co.uk

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