“Goths have been in the news recently for the most terrible of reasons. Last month a 20-year-old from Manchester spoke out after being beaten up by a gang who had mocked him for the way he looked. Stephen Jones, a Goth, had piercings and tattoos and wore his hair tied back in a ponytail. The case echoed the tragedy of Sophie Lancaster, also aged 20, who was murdered by a teenager in Lancashire. In the court case three months ago, it was said a gang had launched a vicious and unprovoked attack on Sophie and her boyfriend Robert Maltby, simply because they were dressed differently. They were Goths.
Adrian Crawley, who organises the quarterly Gothic Balls at the Bartons Arms in Aston, Birmingham, says he has always had to make the safety of those who attend a priority. ‘We make sure that nobody leaves on foot. It’s just because people are dressed differently from those in the surrounding area. ‘You have to be careful because you are bound to attract attention,’ he says.
But what is a Goth – other than someone who sometimes attracts hostile attention through piercings, jewellery and wearing black? In Birmingham, there are plenty that can answer that question for themselves. The city had a thriving Goth scene in the 80s and 90s and while it has gone more underground now, there are still those who meet and tell their stories:”
(via The Birmingham Post)