Founder of gay rugby club heading to House of Lords

PinkNews logo on pink background with rainbow corners.

The politician who founded the Kings Cross Steelers gay rugby club has been handed a peerage.

Robert Hayward was the MP for Kingswood from 1983 until 1992, before coming out as gay after leaving Parliament.

After leaving Parliament he also became a gay rights advocate, serving on the board of Stonewall and co-founding a gay rugby club, the Kings Cross Steelers, in 1995.

He currently serves as Vice President of the club – which successfully competed as the first gay Rugby Union team in the world, and which continues to dominate gay rugby tournament the Union Cup.

The club has also become known in recent years for its naked calendar.
Founder of gay rugby club heading to House of Lords

It tweeted: “Congratulations to one of our founder members and first chairman Robert Hayward OBE on his life peerage, announced today.”

Mr Hayward was one of 45 politicians to be handed a peerage – with 26 Tories, 11 Lib Dems and 8 Labour politicians named in the dissolution honours list.

He is not the only out public figure to be elevated to the Lords – with Ed Miliband’s election ‘guru’ Spencer Livermore, Nick Clegg’s former Chief of staff Jonny Oates, and ex-Tory MP Greg Barker all heading to the Upper House.

Former Lib Dem MP Lynne Featherstone, the architect of the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples Bill) that brought same-sex marriage to England and Wales, will also head to the Lords and keep a role on the Lib Dem ‘frontbench’.