This summer, we’ve been working with the Queer Surf Club (QSC) to find out what Finisterre can do to support surfers from the LGBTQIA+ community. The elephant in the room is that the industry, and surf brands, have helped to create a surf culture that encourages a specific demographic - straight white male surfers - to dominate the water and the culture. Ultimately this has resulted in discouraging those that don't fit this stereotype to take part in the sport, or even access blue spaces.
Frazer Riley, aka Frazzle, decided to use his white male privilege to encourage a different kind of surfing community to exist. From a landlocked sofa in London, Frazzle had become frustrated with the options to find community as a queer person. Searching for like-minded outdoorsy people, like many of his fellow LGBTQIA+ community, he found it impossible to track down spaces that weren’t orientated around overtly sexualised and hedonistic nightlife. So he started his own. The Queer Surf Club now has 867 members. The meet-ups and online community bring LGBTQIA+ surfers from across the globe together and support each other in their love of surfing. The club offers subsidies to help would-be surfers typically priced out of accessing the sport by location or financial means.
As a white cis gay man, Frazer openly understands that he has benefited most from the pride movement, with bill changes and the financial opportunities he can access due to his privilege. He says, “There are still members, particularly in our trans community, under attack. If I can make a haven for them in our QSC community, then that is the thing I’m most proud of.”