UK report – August 2003

IML 2003 is official supporter of the ReviseF65 Project

Eric and Svein have been rallying support for SM human rights in the UK during august 2003. Representing the ReviseF65 project, they have held four workshops with in all more than fifty people attending. At all the workshops there were represented different gay and straight SM/fetish leaders and mental health specialists from several countries, and during August the number of members on the ReviseF65 mailing list has increased by 50 percent. One of the workshops received the visit of International Mr Leather, John Pendal. Afterwords he decided to support officially the ReviseF65 project.

International Mr Leather, John Pendal (picture left) published August 26th that ReviseF65 is one of five projects that he will support during the year he holds the title. This should provide a good opportunity for informing people about our project work.

John Pendal is one of very few Europeans who has been awarded International Mr Leather. He got the title at the IML contest in Chicago May 25th 2003. He has taken this year off, to give the role his full attention.

Eric and Svein met him at Europride in Manchester 2003. The ECMC leather club MSC Manchester Superchain had invited John to walk in front of their leather-section in the Europride parade Saturday 23rd 2003. For some time Eric and Svein have had mail contact with MSC‘s hon secretary Ian A. He helped us to get a location for our ReviseF65 workshop in Manchester. Friday 22nd Ian presented us to John (picture right) and Sunday John surprisingly attended our ReviseF65 workshop at Malmaison Hotel. It was very interesting and a big honour for us to be able to present our work to the International Mr Leather.

After the lecture we met John at Manchester Legends Bar celebrating MSC Superchain‘s 20th birthday. We asked him if he would consider the possibility of becoming an official supporter of the ReviseF65 project. He answered “yes” immediately and asked Svein to be photographed together with him in front of the Norwegian flag to demonstrate his support (see the upper picture in the right column).

On Monday we wrote John a mail from an internet café in Manchester and thanked him for his support. Tuesday Ian Gurnhill in Spanner Trust (picture left ) told us that John had linked up the ReviseF65 project on his IML Link page. Friday August 29th, we met John and his partner David at the Hoist leatherclub in London. This is John‘s home club where he received the title “Mr Hoist 2003” in February. John told us that he now also had linked the ReviseF65 project to his Support site. This means that ReviseF65 is one of five projects that IML 2003 endorses. This support is of course a big inspiration for us in our work.

In addition to the workshop at Malmaison Hotel, Eric held a “women only” workshop Sunday August 24th at UK’s First International Womens‘ SM Conference in Manchester. On his first trip to the UK, Svein held a successful workshop at the SM Pride festival in London Saturday August 2nd. Another workshop was held at Central Station, Kings Cross, London Thursday August 28th. This lecture was one hour delayed because of the big power-failure (picture right) that stopped all traffic at London‘s Underground system for hours.

The four ReviseF65 workshops attracted from 4 to 40 participants each. At all the workshops central human-rights activists attended. Discussions, dinners and strategy meetings with these SM/leather leaders gave us feedback which will be important for our continued project work.

In addition, our two visits to the UK gave us the opportunity to take a lot of SM/fetish pictures, which we consider an important ingredient of the Revise F65 website.

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