Interview: What is a gay pride in Brighton like?

dúhový pochod v Brightone

We have prepared for you a series of LGBT community articles in the UK. We asked Liv (38, Photographer) about gay Pride in Brighton. Liv lived in England for 12 years – first in beautiful London, later in Brighton.

Liv, as you have already mentioned, Brighton and London have a great LGBT population. How many Prides have you attended?

For the last 12 years I have attended two Prides. Of course, because I lived right “in the center of the show”, I perceived all of them, but not all of them I have attended.

Najväčší dúhový pochod v Anglicku

How is Brighton Pride like?

In Brighton, the largest “gay city” in England,Pride takes place every year on the first weekend of August. A few weeks before Pride the city pulsates with gay atmosphere – doubledeckers (typical English double-decker buses) are painted in rainbow colors. There are mottos that support the human rights and gay community. The representatives of NHS (National Health Service), police, banks they all take part in parade.  For example, the police officers walk along in uniforms with faces painted in rainbow colors.

Shops and banks have their windows decorated with creative rainbow elements, and mottos supporting the LGBT community. The whole city is living in an atmosphere of Pride two weeks before the very beginning. Cafés have special rainbow cups ready to go. People walking down the streets with rainbow cups that support the gay community. I would say that the LGBT community is popular in England, also because it takes part in many volunteering events and is supporting other communities as well.

Brighton Pride - Letisko Gatwick

Where does the parade start and which parts of Brighton is going through?

Brighton Pride begins in a part of the city called Hove Lawns. It continues along Seafront to the famous Brighton Pier. Then it continues around Pavillion, via London Road to Preston Park, where the parade ends and continues with a big party. In Preston Park, you can find roundabouts, refreshment stalls and several tents with music and also the main stage featuring the famous stars every year. After party is also in the center of the city in the part called Kemptown.

ulice - LGBT pochod

Do you need to buy a tickets for parade or pay any fee to get to the park ?

You can watch the parade for free.
Few years ago the entrance to Preston Park and Kemptown was free. The entrance fees were paid back a few years. Ticket price depends on whether you buy a ticket in advance or not. Also, whether you buy a ticket for one day or for the whole weekend, and whether a ticket is valid anywhere, or just in Preston Park. If I remember well, the entry to the park was between 17 and 37 pounds, but I recommend finding the current price list at www.pride-tickets.org.

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Does the Brighton Pride have a pre-scheduled program?

Of course, in addition to the parade itself, there is a planned program in Preston Park and Kemptown Village.

gay shop

Are there any celebrities who participate in the Pride to support the LGBT community?

Yes, every year the organizers invite the official celebrities who perform at the main stage and support the LGBT community. For example, for the past years, it has been Britney Spears, Pet Shop Boys, Fatboy Slim, Pixie Lott, Jess Glynne.

Brighton Pavilion LGBT

How many people do you think visit Brighton Pride each year?

It’s hard to say, but in 2018, it has reached a record number of 300,000 visitors. Every year it is a minimum of 100,000 visitors. Brighton Pride is the largest rainbow march in the UK.

gay, lesba, trans - pochod

What kind of people usually attend the parade?

The march itself is attended by people of different age categories and social spheres. As I have already mentioned, accompanying people proudly represent their company or organization to which they belong (for example, non-profit organizations, police, health, banks, …). Companies see Pride as a great place to advertise for free. Every year the parade is also attended by Brighton’s oldest gay man, George Montague. There are thousands of people watching the parade – parents with children, retirees, and mainly tourists who travel to Brighton from different countries around the world.

Brighton Pride

What would you recommend to the Slovak organizers of Pride in Bratislava and Košice or to organisers all around the world?

It’s hard to recommend anything to organizers in a country where people are frightened. Maybe  not to be afraid and make it more prominent, especially among young people. And not to give up! We are now much better than we were before, and I believe it will improve even more.

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Is Brighton Pride safe?

Yes, I think there is nothing to worry about. People at Pride celebrate love and coexistence, everyone is nice to everyone. There are cameras throughout the city, the police are at every corner and everything is very well organized. Of course, alcohol and drugs are also part of the celebration.

Brighton Pride - podpora

We hope that our interview has motivated you, and you already know where you will spend the first weekend of August 🙂

Photo credits – LS Photo.

Published in Stories


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