GTea Break

Tony Blair joins celebrations for gay rights activist Michael Cashman

Celebrities and world leaders pay tribute to former MEP Michael Cashman

Last night GT joined friends and colleagues of Michael Cashman to say 'thank you' for his service to LGBT rights. The long-serving politician stepped down at recent Euro elections, after 15 years as an MEP, and a lifetime campaigning for the rights of minority groups.

Before joining the European Parliament, Michael was one half of the first gay kiss to be aired on British TV, before going on to co-found gay rights charity Stonewall.

Michael gave a very personal interview to GT earlier this year, talking of his decades in the public eye and campaigns for the rights of LGBT people. He revealed that, as a young actor living in east London, he had suffered a brutal sexual assault by an older married man, but feared the repercussions for himself if he went to police.

Among the well wishers at last night's central London party, Tony and Cherie Blair arrived to pay their best wishes. Others included fellow former PM Gordon Brown, Neil Kinnock, Paul O'Grady and Michelle Collins, who starred in a new film to say #ThanksMichael.

PHOTO: Paul Cottingham (Michael's partner), Simon Fanshawe (Stonewall founder), Tony Blair, Michael Cashman, Cherie Blair, Lisa Power (Stonewall founder).

To read Michael Cashman's life story, download the June 2014 issue from here.

Words: Benjamin Butterworth

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