Skip to content
Global PlayerGlobal Player
“Expect extra calls” | Episode 5

“Expect extra calls” | Episode 5

By Tash Walker, Adam Zmith and Shivani Dave

Every time anything to do with LGBTQ+ life was mentioned on TV or in the newspaper in the 80s, Switchboard volunteers took extra calls. In this episode, Tash and Adam speak to the people behind TV programmes and newspaper columns, and hear about the feverish atmosphere that led to anti-gay legislation in 1988. The section on today has two very special guests: our very own Shivani Dave, and Simon McCallum from the BFI National Archive, both comparing the media today with 1983 to 1991.

Content warning: some archaic language that some listeners may find offensive as our contributors discuss how language was used to attack people especially in the media.

Transcript here.

The Log Books — stories from Britain’s LGBT+ history and conversations about being queer today. Produced by Shivani Dave, Tash Walker and Adam Zmith, in partnership with Switchboard - the LGBT+ helpline. With thanks to the Bishopsgate Institute and the BFI National Archive.


Lesbian and Gay Newsmedia Archive at the Bishopsgate Institute 


Watch more episodes of Gay Life on the BFI Player


Mediawatch: Treatment of Male and Female Homosexuality in the British Media by Terry Sanderson

Policing Desire by Simon Watney

Music by Tom Foskett-Barnes

Artwork by Natalie Doto

Support this show

Hosted on Acast. See for more information.

Heart UK