Vicky de Lambray

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Person.png Vicky de LambrayRdf-icon.png
VikkiDeLambray.jpg
Born1950
DiedAugust 1986 (Age 35)
Stockwell, London
Cause of death
suspicious
NationalityBritish
Other names
  • Vikki de Lambray
  • David Christian Lloyd-Gibbon
  • David Gibbon
  • Louis de Rothschild
  • Caroline Clark
OccupationSex worker

Vicky de Lambray (also known as Vikki de Lambray and previously David Christian Lloyd-Gibbon or David Gibbon) was a British transvestite male prostitute who became a favourite of Fleet Street gossip columnists. In an essay called "London Grandeur"[1] Phaedra Kelly says that Vicky claimed she would be "the most famous transgenderist ever and die dramatically at the age of 30".


Early life

De Lambray was born in Hertfordshire and attended a Public School, before running away to London while still a teenager. There, he became a sex worker and worked as a female impersonator.[2]

Life in London

Vicky de Lambray claimed he was addicted to the idea of becoming famous. He regularly hired a Rolls Royce with the funds he received from prostituting himself in Shepherd Market in London's West End. He would place a large "Vicky de Lambray — Entertainer" sign in the back of the Rolls and drive for hours around central London or park outside Harrods. De Lambray once changed his name by deed poll to Louis de Rothschild, hoping he would be confused as a Rothschild family member. The Rothschild family paid him ten thousand pounds to change it back.

De Lambray was often in the headlines because of court appearances, sex scandals and claims that he was a spy. In March 1983, a senior British civil servant, Sir James Dunnet, was questioned by Scotland Yard detectives over a brief sexual encounter he had had with de Lambray in the early years of his retirement. Official concern over this liaison stemmed from the claim of the prostitute that a Soviet spy had also been among his clients at that time, a circumstance which might, given Dunnet's former position at the Ministry of Defence, have constituted a security risk. In the event, Ministry of Defence officials satisfied themselves that Dunnet's actions had constituted no threat to national security[3]

At his trial for the theft of Dunnet's credit cards, de Lambray invented a persona named Caroline Clark. Clark claimed to major newspapers that she was an acquaintance of de Lambray's would sell Fleet Street newspapers the inside story about an upcoming trial involving a former spy chief. This ruse was extremely profitable for de Lambray, who was splashed over the front pages of newspapers - as was Sir James Dunnet. The stories became more and more outrageous, with sex stories that would have been highly embarrassing for Dunnet.

Gay News carried a short article in September 1983, saying de Lambray was a convicted High Society art thief and apparent MI5 tempter/temptress, and noting his brief sexual relationship with Captain Anatoli Zotov, former Soviet Naval attache.[4] De Lambray's 900 page autobiographical manuscript - "naming names" - went missing in the same year.[5]

In May 1986, detectives investigating a series of homosexual murders found de Lambray's name listed in a suspect's address book. In July 1992, The Evening Standard reported that de Lambray was a friend of Private Eye journalist Paul Halloran.[6] He was also a friend of British pop group manager and entrepreneur Kit Lambert.[7]

It remains unclear whether de Lambray was, as claimed by some, a transsexual: "sometimes called TS but nobody knows for sure, nor will they now."[8]

Death

Despite a colourful life, de Lambray is perhaps known for a dramatic and mysterious death. According to The Times, de Lambray died in his flat in Stockwell, south London in August 1986 following a suspected heroin overdose. Three hours before he was found, de Lambray telephoned the Press Association, telling a reporter, 'I have just been killed. I have been injected with a huge amount of heroin. I am desperate.'[9] De Lambray's initial call to police, asserting that a group of men had injected the heroin into him, may not have been taken seriously. However, when they arrived Vicky was dead. No puncture marks were found on autopsy and no cause of death could be established, though traces of drugs and alcohol were detected in his system.[10] He is buried at the family churchyard in Herefordshire

References

  1. In Blending Genders, edited by Richard Ekins and Dave King, Routledge 1996
  2. "Vicky de Lambray (1950 – 1986) a person of interest to Scotland Yard and MI6". A Gender Variance Who's Who. Retrieved 4 April 2016.Page Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css must have content model "Sanitized CSS" for TemplateStyles (current model is "plain text").
  3. Obituary of Sir James Dunnett, The Times 6 January 1998
  4. Gay News 29 September 1983
  5. The Guardian 28 July 1983
  6. The Evening Standard 28 March 1995
  7. Gay Network - Circa-Club - the online social/business club for gay professional men » Music
  8. In Blending Genders, edited by Richard Ekins and Dave King, Routledge 1996
  9. The Times 10 August 1986
  10. The Guardian 8 November 1986
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