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Gay Village

February 1990 to February 2008

Birmingham's stretches the length of Hurst Street and everything to the right towards Bristol Street.

The top end of Hurst Street has been a focus of gay life since the 1970s with the , and Thorp Street Nightingale all serving the gay community in the vicinity. This clutch of bars was often inconspicuous and known only to the gay community themselves.

Slowly over the last fifteen years gay businesses have colonised the semi derelict lower end of Hurst Street and surrounds. From the early pioneers such as the , and , to the eventual move of the from its to on Kent Street the area has seen a continual expansion of gay businesses and a recognition of the area as a . Most notably in 1997 opened on the corner of Hurst and Kent street and was the first bar to have plate glass windows open to the street, heralding a new era of openess from the city's gay community.

Today gay flags adorn some fifteen bars, clubs and shops. Couples regularly hold hands and kiss in the street, many restaurants buzz with gays and groups of friends, with many of the new apartments being snapped up by gay residents wanting a slice of city life within vibrant .

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