Coventry and West Midlands

Gay West Midlands Councillor Bill Gavan awarded MBE in New Year’s Honours List

Catherine Muxworthy December 31, 2023

Councillor Bill Gavan, current Mayor of Sandwell, has been awarded an MBE for Political and Public Service, and for service to the LGBTQ+ community, in the New Year’s Honours List.

Councillor Gavan was a founder chairman of Birmingham Pride, forming part of a small committee in 1996 which fundraised for the Birmingham Pride held in 1997. He also ran the popular nightclub Subway City Dance Clubs in Birmingham which opened in 1995, and formerly owned an LGBTQ+ nightclub in Wolverhampton in his name, Gavans.

Earlier this year, the Labour councillor was appointed Mayor of Sandwell making him the areas second, consecutive gay mayor after Councillor Richard Jones.

Now aged 73, Cllr Gavan has been sober for 47 years, and during that time he has helped countless other people in their recovery. In being awarded an MBE, he has been recognised for his contribution to politics, LGBTQ+ issues in Birmingham and the wider West Midlands, and for helping those in recovery from drink and drug addiction.