Star of London Lives’ Drag Queens Of London, Lady Lloyd, opens up about being homophobically attacked and how life has changed since.

When and where exactly did the attack happen?
It was when I was 15, and it happened as I was catching a late night train from Stansted Station into West End to see my best friend Siobhan Donaghy perform at G-a-Y when she was in Sugababes.

How many people attacked you?

How old were they?
They were the same age.

Did you know who they were?
I knew who one of them was, but the other two I never found out. The one I know for sure was put away for other attacks, and actually got a brain tumour and died. Now I wouldn’t wish harm on anyone, but you know – Karmas a bitch!

Could you describe your injuries for me?
Just completely bashed up! black eyes, busted lip and had my face cut open on my cheek. It was pretty horrific, I really think if it had gone to court it would have been attempted murder, as it happened on a bridge and they were trying to shove me off it onto the train tracks.

What age did the abuse/bullying start?
I guess it started when I started high school, but just words and stuff which has never bothered me. I was going out nightclubbing from 13 and hanging out with people 25+…I matured really quickly , I think i’m more immature now than I was then, and so playground bullying never bothered me, I used to play up to it really…I wore a Spice Girls puff jacket for goodness sake and had my own hair salon during lunch break! I had a great time at school, I loved it.

Have you encountered any abuse/bullying since, in recent years?
Not really, maybe some remarks here and there but nothing that stands out, but my friend, legendary nightclub host Phillip Salon, was brutally attacked and left for dead outside the GAP in Piccadilly, and the police claim there was no CCTV. On that corner in Piccadilly, Central London? I don’t think so. My attack happened in front of CCTV cameras, and it was claimed they just weren’t switched on. Shocking.

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When did you start dressing in drag?
Probably when I was 16. But you know, we are born naked – everything else is drag. It comes in dribs and drabs – an eyeliner here, a heel there – I don’t really think of drag as a transformation, my clothes don’t have genitals, a man in a skirt, a girl in a nice pair of trousers it’s all the same.

Do you think the attack has left any scars? Emotional and physical?
I have a scar on my cheek and another on my hand, so there is that which isn’t pleasant, but some people like them. Other than that emotionally not really – I certainly gained in confidence and I think I have a really strong core and belief in myself , but I don’t know if that is a result of one attack or of living my life as true to my own self as I can, which I have always done, no apologies.

The problem of hate crimes and incidents
• One in six lesbian, gay and bisexual people have experienced a homophobic hate crime or incident over the last three years.
• In the last year alone, almost one in ten lesbian, gay and bisexual people have experienced a homophobic hate crime or incident.
• One in sixteen regard homophobic harassment or attacks as a big problem in their area.

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About the author: Jake Hook
The editor and chief of THEGAYUK. All in a previous life wrote and produced songs on multi-platinum records.