Created By: Radical Wellington Walking Tour
Porleen Simmons (whose name you may recognise from the Woman's Place bookstore a few stops ago) was a lesbian activist since the 1970s. She passed away on 28 September, 2014.
Prior to her opening her bookstore with Pleasance, she, along with three others, founded Club 41 in 1974, Wellington's first lesbian club located on 41 Vivian Street. She was also a founding member of LILAC, the Lesbian Information, Library and Archives Centre, the Sisters for Homophile Equality (SHE) in 1973, and the lesbian-feminist magazine Circle. Porleen's active, energised presence in the lesbian community demonstrates the intersection between political praxis and the simple need for social spaces like Club 41.
Want to learn more?
LILAC is an active organisation, a lesbian library and women-only space located at 187 Willis Street, Wellington.
Alison J. Laurie, 'Lesbian lives - Early meeting places', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/ephemera/30279/lesbian-social-life-club-41 (accessed 1 March 2018)
This point of interest is part of the tour: Walking Radical Wellington