In 2015, the Leeds LGBT* community lost a bubbly, colorful & popular young man who had his whole life ahead of him.
Struggling with deteriorating mental health and suspected bullying - Matty tragically took his own life sending a shock wave of loss and disbelief throughout our community.
Through tragedy we united to remember Matty, raise awareness about mental health issues, help break down stigma & raise money for organisations that give back to our community.
Queen Bee was born, an Drag Queen Competition that has taken place in Leeds every year since 2015.
Matty loved the Leeds LGBT* Scene, its diverse venues, Leeds Pride & the various community events. He was known to many and loved by many, often the life & sole of the party.
He had a particular fondness of Drag Queens & befriended many.
Matty could often be found at the edge of the stage or DJ box watching with fascination as Drag Queens performed cabaret & interacted with the crowd.
When it came to deciding what type of event would be used to remember Matty each year, a Drag Queen competition seemed only too fitting & in the very spirit of Matty as one of his biggest loves in life.
In our 3rd year of staging the Queen Bee event our community was once again in mourning. This time at the passing of a very special lady and one of our biggest allies.
Roseann Fields know to many as Rosie, sadly lost her battle with cancer in 2017. She dedicated her life to helping others, sharing her unending love & support and celebrating diversity.
Rosie was a mum to many on the Leeds LGBT* scene & one of the most genuine and caring people you could ever wish to meet.
Since 2017, Queen Bee has also been dedicated to her memory & legacy with 50% of all proceeds going to St Gemma’s Hospice - a service Rosie used and wanted us to all to continue supporting after she passed away.
Raising money & giving back to the community
Over our first 2 events, Queen Bee raised money for various services in the area that offered support & care for those suffering mental health issues & crisis. More than £9,000 was raised over the first 2 years.
Since 2017, Queen Bee has decided to focus its fund raising efforts on 2 core organisations in our community.
We chose these organisations because Matty & Rosie believed in them and they offer support and care for people just like Matty & Rosie.
You can find more information about our chosen causes below.
Each year in December, our event takes place and it brings the community together under one roof for a colorful celebration, it’s loud, flamboyant & often outrageous; Matty & Rosie wouldn’t have it any other way!
At the center of everything Queen Bee is and does is Matty & Rosie and an extremely important message. To support each other, be kind, understanding, appreciate each other and to be accepting - cornerstones of any true community.
In a wonderful demonstration of solidarity each year, almost 400 people attend Queen Bee and more than £22,000 has now been raised.
Yorkshire Mesmac is one of the most diverse service & support organisations in the UK.
They offer help, advice & education to young LGBT* people & social support for people living with HIV.
A number of LGBT* Youth Support groups are also run across our region.
St Gemma’s Hospice
St Gemma’s Hospice is one of the UK’s oldest & largest Cancer & terminal illness hospices - located in Leeds.
They offer invaluable care & support for patients fighting cancer or terminal illness as well as supporting family & friends.
A dedicated team of Doctors, Nurses & Counselors also provide tailored end of life care at the hospices inpatient unit.
Care is offered free of charge and St Gemma’s Hospice depends on fund raising to continue its vital work in our community.