A photo from one of Bird's performances at the National Portrait Gallery. Bird is holding up a ground plan of St Martin's Workhouse. The audience is standing around her.
Bird holding up a ground plan of St Martin’s workhouse which once stood on the site of the National Portrait Gallery

A Queer Portrait of a Workhouse is a unique uncovering of the queer connections to the workhouse including LGBT people who survived or died in the workhouse. You will be fascinated and moved by this performative armchair tour which traces the history of the workhouse vis a vis the lives of the queer poor, working class people and people of colour. Believe it or not there will even be some LOLs along the way.

The journey begins in St Martin’s workhouse which now stands on the site of one of London’s largest workhouses then goes to the Cinema Museum in Lambeth which was once a workhouse and the site of a long forgotten queer scandal that rocked Victorian Britain.

Featuring transgendered milkmaids, early mental health rights activists and culminating in hot tramps and the noises of sodom, the performance traces the history of austerity in a way that is inclusive, engaging and emotional.