Andrew Lumsden, founder of Gay Liberation Front and Pride, dies aged 82

Andrew Lumsden

Tributes have poured out for pioneering gay rights activist Andrew Lumsden, who has died aged 82. 

Lumsden was in his twenties in the 1960s when he began to fight for LGBTQ+ rights, calling for the decriminalisation of homosexuality, helping to organise the very first Pride in London march in 1972 as a member of the Gay Liberation Front and founder of Gay News.

For the entirety of his adult life, Lumsden fought and campaigned for LGBTQ+ rights alongside other well-known activists.

Queer Tours of London, where Lumsden was a tour guide, said in a social media post the team is “deeply saddened” to learn of his death.

Veteran LGBTQ+ activist Peter Tatchell called Lumsden a “friend, comrade, HERO!” in a post on X, the platform previously known as Twitter. 

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LGBTQ activist Jason Jones said the news of Lumsden’s death has left him “utterly devastated”. 

“His contributions to the fight for LGBTQ+ equality cannot be measured,” Jones said, “A very dear friend, I valued his advice & counsel tremendously. 

“Rest in power dear Andrew and see you somewhere over the rainbow.”

HIV activism organisation ACT UP London wrote: “Rest in Power Andrew Lumsden, Iconic LGBTQ+ Activist, Campaigner, Gay Liberation Front pioneer and a really kind hearted man.

“A great loss to our community who will be sadly missed. Thank you Andrew for all you did XX”

Stef Dickers, special collections and archives manager at Bishopsgate Institute, said the team is “gutted” to hear of Lumsden’s loss. Adding: “It was always a joy to see him at the Institute.”

Tony Bird, who said he knew Lumsden for 30 years, said he was “always an inspiration” and “always a twinkle in his eye”.