Ballroom extravaganza honouring the UK’s LGBTQ+ history coming to London with Cîroc Vodka

There has been no shortage of remarkable milestones in the UK’s queer history in recent years.

In 2017, we saw the 50 year anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of male homosexuality, which was commemorated with numerous exciting cultural events, like Tate Britain’s landmark exhibition Queer British Art.

In 2019, LGBTQ+ charity Stonewall celebrated its 30th birthday and London’s iconic queer bookshop Gay’s The Word turned 40, while community helpline Switchboard marked 45 years of changing lives, one phone call at a time.

These anniversaries are a reminder of how far the LGBTQ+ community has come. It feels like we’re living through a moment where queer history has a foothold in the mainstream, particularly in the UK, with dramas like Channel 4’s Its a Sin (2021) breaking viewership records.

May 2022 saw the launch of Queer Britain – the UK’s first LGBTQ+ museum, which opened its doors in King’s Cross. LGBTQ+ people have impacted every part of British culture, but with so many stories and artefacts either lost or purposefully erased, the museum’s mission is to preserve their stories. Queer Britain is a space where people of all identities can learn about the rebellious and diverse history of the UK’s LGBTQ+ people.

The legendary Mother Gorgeous Lola Gucci getting her 10s as always – face, body and appeal. (Lola Gucci)

It is this history of resistance that Cîroc, the vodka brand produced by beverage maker Diageo, is determined to help celebrate and preserve. Diageo has partnered with Queer Britain to commemorate 50 years of Pride in the UK.

As well as supporting Queer Britain in its important work archiving and protecting our history, Cîroc is also celebrating the ways that history informs our present. On 30 June, it’s throwing a ballroom extravaganza at London’s iconic Koko Camden. Cîroc Presents: The Iconic Ball will be an unapologetic celebration of queer art and culture in all its forms.

Emceed by Legendary’s Jack Mizrahi, with co-hosts Jonny Woo and Shon Faye, the event will feature a who’s who of the UK’s ballroom community battling it out for the title of Iconic House of 2022, and will also support the work of Not A Phase, a charity which creates safe and affirming spaces for trans adults in the UK.

If this sounds like your idea of a fabulous time, Cîroc is giving you the chance to win one of just 50 exclusive tickets to attend the ball – just click here to enter. Expect surprises, high drama and some devastating looks.

The night will be a celebration of ballroom, a community that has been inextricably linked to queer nightlife throughout history.

In times where LGBTQ+ people were on the margins, and archaic privacy laws required expressions of queerness to remain hidden, queer spaces – where people could show affection, dance and celebrate together – provided even more of a lifeline than they still do today.

It might be Pride season and 50 years since the UK’s first Pride march, but Cîroc understands that LGBTQ+ life happens all-year-round, every single day.

Click here for your chance to win tickets to Cîroc Presents: The Iconic Ball.