There are many UK Pride events that I have been either involved in or just been to, from Leeds to Lincoln, Wakefield to Chester and almost everywhere in between.
One Pride sticks out for me more then the others and it’s a Pride that I know some others have now modelled themselves on.
Am I talking about Leeds LGBT Pride? That is what you all may be thinking, but no I’m actually talking about York Pride.
Yes York the historical walled capital of Yorkshire (the clue is in the name). I’ve seen York Pride develop as an event and organisation over the years and it’s success is no mean feat. York having gone from an homosexual hunting ground of the heterosexual elite where the old stories of being able to fire arrows at a Scottish Man within the city walls may as well have applied for the gays and lesbians too.
Thankfully time has moved on and in most part this is all down to the hard work year on year out of the York Pride Committee and volunteers.
Too many Pride events have lost sight of their communities!
Too many Pride events around the country and indeed the world have lost sight of the true meaning of LGBT Pride. Far too many Pride events now seem to believe that the event is about booze and big name acts.
Some believe that a Pride’s success can be judged on which X-Factor reject they can pull in to entertain the intoxicated revellers.
I am proud to say that York Pride has stayed true to it’s ethos of community building and helping people to understand the LGBT whilst giving hope, support and advice to those struggling with coming to terms with their own sexual preferences and/or gender identity.
You only have to look at the huge community support the York Pride receives to know what a good job they are doing to highlight our minority group that just happen to fancy the same sex.
Support that oozes with pride.
Support that oozes from the likes of York City FC, Millthorpe School (and others), the Police, BBC Radio York, York University, companies such as Benenden Health, the city council and even this year officially for the first time York Minster.
What I’m most proud about the guys and gals at York Pride is that they don’t just provide one event per year, they support LGBT community projects all year round with the likes of their regular LGBT nights.
The focus of York Pride is love and respect and I urge you all to “Raise the Rainbow” in fitting with York Pride’s theme this year.
Raise your rainbow!
So on Saturday 20th June (2015) join the celebrations for York Pride outside the Minster at 11.30am for the beginning of the Pride Parade which heads to the Knavesmire for a full day of entertainment hosted by the infamous Marky Mark and Miss Sordid Secret plus other special VIP hosts (I won’t mention the top headline acts as Pride isn’t just about that).
P.S I hope other Pride events see this and wake up and remember that Pride is about community interaction and involvement and that ego’s should be left firmly at the door.