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The Mayflower Club

The UK has a long history of transgenderism and most Brits will recall seeing men in drag at pantomime shows they saw as a child. Pantomime itself dates back a couple of centuries as a style of performance so it’s perhaps no wonder then that we have a flourishing community of transvestites and transsexuals - we've played with taboos for ages. They’re pretty much everywhere in the UK though there are certain areas which have notably high populations such Manchester and Yorkshire in the North and London and Hampshire in the South. The Mayflower Club is one of many groups who meet on the South Coast of England, and they are in Totton near Southampton.

I went to the Mayflower Club when I first properly came out. Before I’d been out on many occasions either by myself or with Angel but – yeah, and call me slow or what – it had never dawned on me that going to a place that was safe and frequented by other cross dressing trannies could be really good fun. I’d met my wonderful “Auntie Janie” some time before on a chat room and had joked with her constantly about how she ought to take me out for a drive in her Jaguar. I really have a thing for Jaguar cars, it’s not just vanity for expensive goods, it’s the purr of the engine, it’s the feline shape of the bonnet, it’s the way they hug the road like a cat stalking it’s prey, they’re just gorgeous! Anyway, Janie held me to it! No, no, no, not over the bonnet, nothing like that, she just offered to take me with her so many times I couldn't refuse anymore without making myself look a right mole. And to this day I’m glad she did.

Incidentally the very fact that you are reading this site right now is partly due to Janie, so I guess we all owe her a debt of gratitude. She’s older than me. OK, much older, but I take my hat off in respect for her. She’s from the pioneer generation, before the internet and surgery and media coverage and she’s still going strong. People like Janie have helped shape the world which the younger generation can enjoy and we always need to be thankful for that.

Mayflower TV Club, Southampton
On my first public outing I get a much needed hug from my darling Aunt Janie

So this was my first “proper” tranny outing. I drove first to Janie’s with Angel in tow and was greeted by a big bear hug that broke the ice. Janie, like so many of the experienced girls within the community, is so down to earth, no airs and graces and just easy to be around. I changed at hers and off we set! There was Janie, her post-op transexual friend Terri, plus me and Angel. And girlfriend, did that Jaguar purr on it’s way to Totton!

Arrived at Totton we pulled up right outside the meeting place of the Mayflower Club which was in some kind of rented hall. It was obvious from the number of other parked vehicles that there were plenty in attendance. As Janie and Terri boldly strode off I followed wondering what would people think of me..?

Passing through the door I was greeted by Michelle, the organiser. She was lovely. Michelle is one of those people with a personality the size of a US state and made me feel at home immediately. The meeting had several things going on. Firstly was food! There was a help yourself buffet going on and we quickly got a plate and began to tuck in to chicken wings and nibbles. At the same time there was a market place staffed mainly by women selling wigs and make up including some really cool heat sensitive colour changing nail polish, something I’ve never seen anywhere else and regret not having bought to this day…

Next up was a quick round or three at the bar to settle those nerves. Several of the girls there had already come up to an obvious newbie and said hi and the experience was kind of like the bewilderment one gets when starting at a new school. One transexual even took great delight in showing me her new breast implants which were very good to feel! Everyone was lovely and I was surprised yet reassured by the number of TGirls who’d arrived accompanied by their wives. Probably a third or more fell into this group. The wives had a good old laugh and chin wag as their men danced around in high heels for the night.

Dani TS at the Mayflower Club
No chance of winning the school girl outfit competition, but high hopes still for Miss Big Boobs of the night with these double-D monsters!

We danced and there was actually a school girl costume competition going on that week which I, due to my ignorance of it’s happening had no chance of winning. It looked like St Trinians! I also got to dance with a dance instructor, Katie, who showed me the moves to a Salsa dance and made me feel completely left footed while she spun me around!

The crowd were so laid back and I’d certainly recommend popping your head in the door if you are based around the area. You can find a lot of support and understanding amongst the people there as well as an outlet for your urges all in a safe environment for what really is next to nothing, especially when you consider you get a free buffet included and you can change there if walking out the door in full costume isn't an option. It was the inspiration that started the outgoing Dani you see today. So here’s my shout out to the Mayflower Club – you lot are well cool, thanks for a really happy night, thanks for being so easy going and thanks for making me realise how much fun it can be to be out amongst your own kindred spirits.

Mayflower Club Review:

  • Type: Support Group for TVs, TSs, Cross Dressers and spouses. Oh, not to forget Chris, the resident geezer (FtM)
  • Location: Covers South East UK with meetings in Southampton, Basingstoke and other locations in Hampshire
  • Entry: Can't really remember exactly as this was years back but nothing that'd break the bank. My guess is over a fiver and under a tenner.
  • Facilities: Your chance to meet other like minded individuals (or your wife's chance to see how other partners cope) in a safe, friendly atmosphere. Drinks, food, dancing, fun stuff and market stalls
  • Plus Points: Caters for a wide range of ages and outlooks, the organiser Michelle is wonderful, a little something for everyone and a good opportunity to make friends
  • Minus Points: Best if you're local or else you may be tempted to have a few drinks to calm your nerves on your first visit and that's no good for driving. Club nights are relatively short.
  • Overall Rating: 7 out of 10
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