Jon (pictured centre)
My first visit to a Gay Men's Week at Laurieston Hall in 1990 felt like a homecoming, and a chance to join a new type of family, including men of all ages and differing backgrounds. This family has grown over the years; each reunion brings the pleasure of familiar faces and the stimulation of meeting new people.
Being a member of this caring and supportive community has opened up new ways of thinking and relating to other gay men and enabled me to explore new ideas and activities, without fear of ‘failing’. In return I have been able to share some of my own interests (e.g. music and dance), which has increased my own self-confidence. I also value the local networks that have grown out of the events, and which keep the spirit of the weeks alive through the year. It is difficult to imagine life without the friendships that have developed over the past 25 years through belonging to the Edward Carpenter Community.