Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

LAUREN STIRLING: Everyone should have their own happy place – this is mine

Lauren with Anne Spank (L) and Demi Pointe (R).
Lauren with Anne Spank (L) and Demi Pointe (R).

I’ve always been a nervous and quiet person – I hate speaking to people I don’t know.

I’d never just start up a conversation with someone I’d never met before.

One night my family and I went to Church in Dundee, a venue that holds a weekly drag show called Bingo Wigs.

Seeing it for the first time was life changing.

It featured drag performances, lip-sync battles and – of course – rounds of bingo.

The atmosphere was incredible thanks to noise from everyone chatting – mostly people in their 20s – and the room’s multi-coloured lights.

Bingo Wigs hosts go above and beyond

I’ve been stared at all my life, judged for having a disability, cerebral palsy.

It can be hard – but you’ve got to remember that most people’s opinions don’t matter.

Feeling judged definitely puts you off going to certain events because you can feel like you’re not wanted there, or that you don’t belong there.

But from the moment I walked through the door at Church, it felt like my safe place.

Nobody judges you or even bats an eyelid.

Church in Dundee.

The hosts that run the show, Demi Pointe and Anne Spank, went above and beyond for me.

Realising there were people out there like that made me feel so happy.

Demi was the first drag queen I was able to speak to in person and this was a huge boost to my confidence.

I have since met so many lovely people through Bingo Wigs, people who I now count as friends and am extremely grateful for.

Demi is such a nice person and very supportive of me.

‘Highlight of my day and week’

Bingo Wigs is always the highlight of my day and week because it’s the one time I can be 100% myself in a social setting without the fear of being laughed at or stared at by people who just cannot mind their own business.

My family – who come with me every week – are really happy.

Lauren with parents Michael and Lisa. Credit: Elliot Cansfield.

They see the confidence Bingo Wigs has given me. They know how much it’s helped me speak to people I’d never have spoken to before.

The majority of people who come to Bingo Wigs come every week so it feels like a family itself.

Interviewing Demi for The Courier earlier this year is one of my proudest moments and hopefully the first of many articles I’ll have published.

The show has also helped me speak to new people in school, where I have always been quiet and shy because I’ve never wanted any unnecessary attention on me.

But making conversation has become much easier.

I think everyone has, or at least should have, their own happy place.

You can’t put a price on having somewhere to go where you can express yourself without judgement or fear.

If you’re ever in Dundee on a Tuesday at 7pm, please come along!

‘I felt like me for the first time’: Dundee club manager on becoming a drag queen

Already a subscriber? Sign in





Please enter the name you would like to appear on your comments. (It doesn’t have to be your real name - but nothing rude please, we are a polite bunch!) Use a combination of eight or more characters that includes an upper and lower case character, and a number.

By registering with [[site_name]] you agree to our Terms and Conditions and our Privacy Policy

Or sign up with

Facebook Google



Or login with

Forgotten your password?