Welcome to the home of BLUF, the Breeches and Leather Uniform Fan Club. BLUF is a club for men who enjoy wearing breeches and leather uniforms. Founded in 1997, there are now over 3,400 members worldwide, and many of them meet in person at BLUF events.
On the BLUF menu, you can find out more about the club. The Community menu has our calendar of events and blog, while on the Info menu you can find many useful resources, including other clubs, vendors and venues around the world.
BLUF is one of the world's biggest communities for men into leather uniforms, with members in dozens of countries and around 100 events every year. Joining BLUF gives you access to our whole site, where you can meet other guys seriously into leather, create a profile, and become part of our community. We maintain a strict dresscode, which you can read about here.
Joining BLUF is free and open to men who meet our dresscode requirements. The site is run by volunteers, and owned by BLUF Ltd, a not-for-profit company based in the UK.
This month there are four special nights at The Backstreet, including BLUF on Saturday 11th Feb, Meat Rack on Saturday 4th, plus Down & Dirty on the 25th, and Rubbrd on the 18th.
Elsewhere there's the London Leather Social on Sunday 5th at Comptons, and London Leathermen's usual club night is at the Eagle on Friday 17th, with FetishBound at Central Station on the 10th.
Looking further ahead, the date for the first IGNITE at The Backstreet is 29th April - the day after the April BLUF night - and in March there's a new Thames Valley Leather Social starting in Reading.
If you've been following the sage of the development proposal for The Backstreet, the current situation is "no news." The deadline for further comments on the application has passed, but the proposal doesn't appear on the agenda for the February planning meeting.
Le prochain week-end BLUF Paris aura lieu du 12 au 14 Mai 2017 durant la 4e édition de Paris Fetish !
Au programme :
♦ Apéritif : Vendredi 12 Mai à 19h - La Mine
♦ Buffet Express : Vendredi 12 Mai à 21h - Zerestoo
♦ Soirée : Vendredi 12 Mai à 22h - Full Metal
♦ Diner : Samedi 13 Mai à 19h30 - Gai Moulin
♦ Cigar Lounge : Samedi 13 Mai à 22h30 - Lieu privé
For those who want to read the full details of the discussion at last month's Strategic Development Committee, where the decision regarding redevelopment of The Backstreet site was taken, the minutes of the meeting can now be downloaded from the Tower Hamlets website. Direct PDF download
One of the inevitable aspects of running a club, or a site like BLUF, is that sooner or later one or more of your members will pass away. Over the years I've been running the club, we've had this happen numerous times, and we now have a fairly structured way of handling the situation. So, I thought I'd outline the procedure for members and other groups who may be wondering about the best way to proceed.
In the first instance, one of the potential issues is notification. There have been some BLUF members who have died in accidents that have been well publicised, but that's generally not the case. Instead, notification comes by word of mouth, or email, from someone else. When that happens, ultimately I have to make a judgement, based on the source of the information, and whether or not it can be verified - the last thing I want to do is to announce the death of a member, when that hasn't actually happened.
For many, we may never know; someone might simply never log in, and their profile will be automatically deleted after a little over a year. However, assuming we are informed, and with enough certainty, the first thing that happens is that the status of the profile is specially flagged.
This means that anyone visiting the profile on the website will see an information banner at the top of the page, saying
We are sorry to announce that we were informed of the death of this member on 15 September 2016
in whatever language they use the site. On our Android app, the message We are sorry to announce this member has died appears at the top of the profile. The Desktop app does not yet display a message. We've refined the wording of this message a few times; some people felt earlier versions were a little insensitive.
In addition, the button to send messages to the member is removed, and trying to send a message via any of our apps will return an explanatory error message. This ensures that messages aren't just vanishing into a void, and that if, for example, the partner of a member were to access their account, they won't be deluged with messages that may not be appropriate.
We also post a short news item on the site. Typically this is just one or two lines, announcing the news, with a link to the profile. In some cases, it may reference the circumstances, or the member's status in the community, for example, if they founded a club, or ran a bar. The news will appear on the Today screen - which is the first page most members seen when they sign in to the site - as well as the News page, and feature in the following Monday's weekly email. We'll typically leave the news item visible for around two weeks.
For some members, we will also publish a memoir or obituary in the site magazine. Where someone is a well known member of the community, we always try to do this. For other members, it really depends on whether or not someone wants to submit something.
When we publish an obituary like this on the site, we automatically copy the profile photos so that they appear alongside it. On the previous version of the site, we would include the original profile text; when we first did this, it quickly became apparent that it's not always appropriate. A member profile might, for example, focus largely on someone's sexual desires, and that's not necessarily what you want to read right after their eulogy. So, we hid the profile text by default, and had a button that could be clicked to read it, labelled "In his own words."
On the current version of the site, we simply hide the profile text automatically; we may revise this later, depending on feedback.
Not everyone, of course, will see the announcement in the news pages within the two weeks its there. So, our usual practise is that the profile remains online, with the information banner displayed, for around six months.
At the end of that period, the profile will be deleted, and the member number becomes available for re-use a year after that (normally, a number is available after 60 days).
In some cases, people have suggested a BLUF collection in memory of a member. The policy on that is that we don't do it. There are two main reasons. Firstly, we generally have no idea whether or not a member is out about their liking for leather to their family. Sending a card from 'Your friends at BLUF' to people who know nothing about that side of someone's life may cause additional distress to them, at a time when they need it least. Secondly, unless someone is prepared to organise a collection every time a member passes away, only some members will be commemorated that way, and not others, a situation about which I feel uncomfortable. If, individually, people want to do something, that is up to them - but for BLUF itself to do so, I think we need to be as even handed as we can.
None of the above is absolutely fixed. In particular, if a member passes away and their partner or close friends are on BLUF, then we will be guided by them when it comes to what happens. Sometimes, someone may simply want a profile to be quietly removed with no announcement. Or they may wish us to include details of funerals or memorials in the news. They might prefer that a profile remains online for longer than six months. Generally, we'll do everything we can to accommodate those wishes.
I hope that this blog has given a little insight into how and why we do things at BLUF, and perhaps some ideas for other groups about the best way to handle such a sensitive matter.
BLUF's website isn't just for our members. You'll find plenty of information available to non-members too, including our listings of leather and fetish vendors, leather venues, and local leather clubs, around the world.
The BLUF events calendar features events worldwide, organised by a wide range of clubs and other groups, and as well as BLUF topics, our blog often includes posts of general interest to the leather community.
Members of BLUF also have access to our online magazine, which includes reports from BLUF events, exclusive photo galleries, and even short stories written by other members. The member forum provides places to share tips or ask for help on a range of topics, incuding For Sale and Wanted sections, travel advice and more.
On your BLUF profile, you can even let people know if you have a guest room, or can show them round your city, and our sophisticated search tools can help you find a bed in a city, or even someone who's into the same things as you, with a playroom, who rides a bike and speaks German.
We're committed to keeping BLUF membership free, with all members getting all the functions of the site. BLUF is funded by donations and sales of BLUF merchandise. Members who donate to BLUF qualify for the BLUF card, which gives discounts at a range of vendors, including Boxer, Clone Zone, Fetish Freak, Mister B and Regulation.