As anyone with a pulse will realise, 21st-28th June was the week of the Pride Arts Festival in London, culminating in a huge, carnival-esque parade on Sunday the 28th. Over a million people attended this year’s Pride event in London, with other well attended events going on simultaneously across the UK in other towns and cities too.
A significant number of Goths are of course LGBT+ or allies, and so the various Pride events all across the country were well attended by Goths of all varieties, so in this blog post I’ll provide a quick roundup of the June event, plus offer up a few dates for your upcoming diary for those that missed out! To keep up to date with other events and preparations with next year’s Pride in London, check out the Facebook page.
The Pride Arts Festival
The arts festival that kicked off the week-long celebrations showcased some of the diverse arts featuring or produced by members of the LGBT+ community. Spoken word poetry, film showcases, photography, sculpture and paintings were all featured, with over forty showcases and events held across the course of the week.
Pride in the Park
Pride in the Park took place in Vauxhall on Sunday the 28th, and was a family friendly day out with a relaxed atmosphere. The great weather and good company gave families and individuals alike the opportunity to chill out, wind down and chat with friends in an inclusive, welcoming environment.
The parade that winds up the event is the highlight of the week for many people, and was the most heavily attended day of all. Over 250 groups totalling some 30,000 people took part in the four-hour trip from Baker Street to Whitehall, passing through many of London’s busiest areas, where hundreds of thousands of spectators turned out to watch and enjoy the day.
The parade was headed up by flagbearers carrying flags for every nation on earth, in a show of solidarity with LGBT+ people all over the world. This year was cause for additional celebration, thanks to several legal precedents being achieved for the LGBT+ community this year, such as the “yes” vote on gay marriage in Ireland, with countries that have taken strides in improving the life and equality status of LGBT+ people heading up the flagbearers.
This year’s parade theme was “Pride Heroes,” recognising the work of notable LGBT+ people throughout history, with Alan Turing, Freddie Mercury and Nelson Mandela being honoured, among others.
If you missed out
If you missed out on Pride in London this year, don’t despair! There are still several upcoming Pride events scheduled in other areas across the UK.
Brighton will be holding a parade on the 1st August, meeting near Hove Lawns at 10.30am. The same again will be happening on the 2nd August in Leeds.
Finally, for LGBT+ Goths and allies, make sure you head down to Brighton for The Queer Alternative’s first showcase at Brighton Pride. The Queer Alternative is designed to raise acceptance and awareness of queer folk from alt subcultures, and should include a hefty portion of Goths as part of that as well.