Much-loved Cardiff gay pub under threat

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Cardiff’s gay community are engaged in a campaign to save a pub in central Cardiff which is being threatened by gentrification.

The Kings Cross pub, situated in the centre of the Welsh capital, has been an official gay venue since the mid 1970s and was a known safe haven for gay men well before homosexuality was legalised in England and Wales in 1967. It is threatened with conversion into a restaurant or gastro-pub in a UK-wide drive by the venue’s owners, Mitchells and Bulters (M&B).

According to BBC News, M&B said: “At this time, options for the Kings Cross are still under review and any final decision is yet to be made.”

There is an online campaign to save the pub which has already attracted 500 supporters in three days.

There is also a Facebook campaign, ‘Save Kings Cross Cardiff‘ and there is to be a public meeting at the venue itself on Tuesday 12 October.

A regular told the BBC that he didn’t believe there was anything anti-gay about the proposed closure, as M&B ran various gay venues around the UK. Rather, he said, “the effect of the planned changes will be to drive out the gay customers who’ve kept the pub going all these years.”

Andrew Roache, as spokesman for M&B, said that they appreciated the Kings Cross was a popular venue with many dedicated customers who understandably wished to know more about the future plans for the business.

He added that any plans afoot would not come into effect this year.