July 2006

Special gay days at theme parks

For the first time ever, two of the UK's best theme parks, Alton Towers and Thorpe Park, have teamed up with Gaydar to offer two thrill-seeking weekends. Gaydar Days atThorpe Park on September 9, and at Alton Towers from September 29 to October 1, will feature top DJs, dance tents, VIP lounges and of course the best rides in the UK. Tickets to both events are a mere £26 for the day, from 10am – 10pm, while VIP tickets cost £80 and include Champagne on arrival, and Q-Jump on popular rides. There's even a two-night hotel package at Alton Towers available through for just £99 per person (based on four sharing). Tickets for Thorpe Park 0870 460 7496; tickets and hotel bookings for Alton Towers 0870 460 7498.

Story from Gay Times -

First gay 'divorce'

A lesbian couple from Kent are believed to have become the first in the country to ask for their Civil Partnership to be dissolved. Daphne Ligthart, 36 and Liz King, 40, registered in Ashford on February 11th.

Ligthart told the Sun, “Liz told me she didn't love me any more, that she hadn't done for years. I was absolutely flabbergasted. I asked her why she'd gone through with the wedding and she said it was to make me happy. But it was all her idea.” She said King had started seeing another woman in March.

King told the newspaper, “I've nothing to say except that I feel sorry for Daphne at this time”.

Under the rules of the Civil Partnership Act, the couple will have to wait until next February, one year since they registered, before they can apply to the courts for a “divorce”.

Story from Gay Times -

Crystal meth usage

New data from the annual National Gay Men's Sex Survey 2005 shows that only a small minority of gay men in the UK had used the drug crystal meth in the last year. The annual survey asked over 16,000 gay and bisexual men questions about their recreational drug use. The initial findings show that fewer than 3% of gay men had used crystal meth in the previous year and just 0.3% of men used crystal meth once or more a week.

Will Nutland, Head of Health Promotion at Terrence Higgins Trust said, “Recent media portrayals have given the impression that crystal meth use is widespread and is driving the HIV epidemic in the UK. This data provides us with the first reliable snapshot of what is really happening. Whilst crystal meth use is a minority activity, it is also important to recognise that its use could increase and that crystal meth use will be problematic for some men. This data helps gay health and drug programmes to measure the real extent of gay men's recreational drug use and respond accordingly.”

Regional data reports for the 2005 Gay Men's Sex Survey can be viewed

Story from Gay Times -

New THT campaign: The Facts!

Terrence Higgins Trust South launched The Facts! campaign last month after consultation with men in the community and members of the Gay Business Forum. Gay men consistently underestimate the numbers of people with HIV, significantly underestimate their likelihood of having sex with someone who has HIV, and many men imagine there is very little HIV in their social circles. In February 2004 researchers conducted HIV research among gay amd bisexual men in gay venues in Brighton & Hove, Manchester and London. They used a saliva test for HIV, new technology which gave a snapshot of HIV prevalence on the gay scene. In Brighton & Hove over 400 gay and bisexual men took an anonymous test and answered questions about their sexual behaviour.

Key findings for Brighton & Hove:

  • 13.7% had HIV (almost one in eight).
  • 33% (one third) of the men with HIV did not know they had it.
  • 48.9% of all negative men had fucked, or been fucked, without a condom at least once in the last 12 months.

The results for the studies in Manchester and London were very similar. The Facts!campaign aims to pass this information onto gay men. This will enable sexually active men to understand the true picture of the environment in which they are living, and to make informed decisions about the safety of their sex.

None of the safer-sex health promotion efforts of the last 20 years would have been possible without the active participation of the gay community. Your support for this campaign will enable gay and bisexual men to become aware of accurate information that is highly relevant to their lives.

Click here to see a poster of the campaign.

Story from Gay Times -

New events page

We have added a new Diary page to the Directory section of the website. This will include events that Gay Men's Health is directly involved in, as well as other diary dates that you may be interested in.

To start off this new page, we have added a list of upcoming Pride Events for 2006 throughout the country.

Click here to see the new Diary page