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Bette Bourne is a British actor, drag queen and activist. He studied drama at Central School of Speech and Drama in London and went on to act on stage and on television throughout the 1960s. He appeared in TV series such as The Avengers and The Prisoner, and in 1969, he appeared alongside Sir Ian McKellen in a touring double bill of Christopher Marlowe’s Edward II and Shakespeare’s Richard II.
In the 1970s, he put his acting career on hold to become an activist with the Gay Liberation Front, becoming part of a gay commune in London. It was during this period that he started wearing drag and changed his name to “Bette”.