Amanda Gegg, May 2018
As a heralded epicentre of freedom and diversity, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better city than London to experience the much-anticipated Pride Festival, which celebrates the LGBTQ community and their army of allies.
Taking place from the 9th June, building to a spectacular finish with ‘Pride Day’ on Saturday 7th July, there are a huge number of vibrant events going on across the capital this summer, all of which have been meticulously planned for all the family to enjoy.
1. Penguin Pride (in Partnership with Gay Times), Cargo, EC2A 3AY (Thursday 5th July)
As an outspoken advocate of the LGBTQ community, Penguin Pride is back once again with a sensational event, showcasing the most influential creative voices in the movement, including poets Jay Bernard and Dizraeli, writer Matthew Todd and musician Kal Lavelle.
2. Hampstead Heath LGBT+ Summer Picnic (Sunday 24th June)
There’s nothing quite like a summer’s day at Hampstead Heath and Pride in London will once again be hosting their annual picnic where you can chill out with your friends, take in some of the organised events and, of course, take a dip in the gorgeous Hampstead Ponds.
3. V&A Museum LGBTQ Tours (selected dates throughout Pride month)
In the spirit of celebrating all things LGBTQ, the formidable V&A Museum have curated specialist tours which will guide you through a selection of items in their impressive collection, all relating to gender and sexual identity.
4. Celebrate Pride: Gallery Tour, National Gallery (Friday 6th July)
The National Gallery have also gotten in on the action and in honour of Pride London they will be hosting a free event that will showcase the paintings in their collection which tell the fascinating stories of same-sex relationships and desire.
5. Pride Day Parade (Saturday 7th July)
If you’re looking to immerse yourself in the inspiring spirit of the LGBTQ community then the world-famous parade lies at the heart of the movement, seeing thousands of elated revellers travel together on foot from Portland Place station, ending up in Trafalgar Square.
6. Trafalgar Square Concert (Saturday 7th July)
It’s no secret that the Pride Day Parade is one of the most uplifting events that London has to offer and it was therefore a no-brainer when the organisers decided to put together an all-singing, all-dancing concert to carry on the fun afterwards in Trafalgar Square.
7. Golden Square Family Stage, Hosted by Olly Pike (Saturday 7th July)
Last year, Minions Jerry and Dave were on hand to party with hordes of families and festival-goers and this year you can expect nothing less from the Family Stage, with a fun-fuelled show hosted by Olly Pike. Not to mention the bouncy castles, entertainers, face-painters, and much, much more.
8. Women’s Stage, Leicester Square (Saturday 7th July)
Last year the Women’s Stage took up residence in the lively hub of Leicester Square and it is back once again with a jam-packed line-up of the world’s most talented and inspirational female artists.
9. Cabaret Stage, Dean Street (Saturday 7th July)
Who can really say they don’t enjoy a bit of cabaret? Even if it isn’t normally your cup of tea, we can wholeheartedly say you haven’t lived until you’ve watched some of the spectacular acts on the Pride Cabaret Stage, located in the heart of Soho.
10. Community Village, Soho Square (Saturday 7th July)
Playing host to the most footfall on Pride Day, you’ll struggle to find a more welcoming, relaxed environment than Soho Square. Here you’ll be able to set up a picnic, peruse the 30+ charity and activity stalls, all whilst taking in some outstanding street performances.
11. UK Black Pride 2018
UK Black Pride is Europe’s largest annual celebration for African, Arab, Asian, Latin American and Caribbean-heritage LGBT+ people and our allies. The 14th annual festival is a free event and takes place in London’s Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens on Sunday 8 July.
With an expanded organising team recruited from across all the diasporas that UK Black Pride represents, 2018 is set to be the organisation’s biggest-ever festival. The main stages will entertain the large crowds with an uplifting blend of live music, song and dance, peppered with politics and poetry, in an inclusive and entertaining, family-friendly festival of community pride. With comedians, sports activities, education and welfare stalls, as well as world food and drink, expect to find something for all tastes.
Join us! Keep up to date by following @ukblackpride on Twitter or visit: ukblackpride.org.uk When: Sunday 8 July Where: Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens, London, SE11 Theme: “Shades of the Diaspora”
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