July 06, 2019
30,000 people to take part in march that critics say has become too commercialised
Pride in London organisers fend off pinkwashing claims
The organisers of Pride in London have claimed Saturday’s event will be the most sustainable and diverse in its 47-year history, despite criticism from some campaigners that it has become too regimented and commercialised.
Peter Tatchell, one of the organisers of the UK’s first Pride parade in 1972, criticised local authority-imposed limits on marcher numbers. “In the 1990s over 100,000 marched, and similar numbers would probably march today if the parade was not restricted,” he said. “Pride has become so bureaucratic and regimented. LGBT+ individuals cannot join the parade, only organisations.”
He also voiced concerns that the onerous costs for road closures, barricades and parking suspensions imposed on Pride had forced it to rely heavily on corporate sponsorship. There was a danger of “pinkwashing”, he said. “Some corporates seem to see Pride as a marketing opportunity to target LGBT+ customers.”
Organisers said pure marketing was not allowed on the parade, and the LGBT+ policies of all participating brands had been carefully examined.
Activists have put up pro-refugee and anti-homelessness slogans on some of the capital’s buses in protest at what they say is the commercialisation of Pride in London.
The campaign group Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants replaced bus advertisements with political messages along the Pride route. The “alternative ads” question why the Home Office, the Metropolitan police and global corporations are able to participate in this year’s Pride while “marginalised groups are left watching on the sidelines because they are unable to afford spaces on the march”.
Sam Bjorn, a spokesperson for the group, said: “You have to ask what London Pride is really for? While the Home Office are celebrated, the LGBT+ migrants that they have dehumanised, detained and forced to live in fear of deportation have to watch from the sidelines.”
Bjorn pointed out that on the day in June when the Home Office changed its social media profile to the rainbow colours it emerged that a gay rugby player was being deported from the UK. He said 78% of asylum cases where the applicants were from the LGBT+ community were turned down.
Hate crime against LGBT+ people has grown by 27% to 11,638 incidents in the year to March 2018, and there have been protests in Birmingham over the introduction of compulsory education for primary pupils on LGBT-inclusive relationships.
Organisers hope Pride will focus minds “in terms of people realising that the fight for equality is not yet won, and that even when things are enshrined in law, that you cannot sit back and take it for granted”, according to its co-chair Alison Camps.
“You cannot be complacent,” she said. “We do not have equal marriage in Northern Ireland. The scenes in Birmingham are extremely distressing for those of us who are old enough to remember when section 28 was enforced, when there was no such thing as inclusive education, and the impact that had on young lives and people being free to be who they were.
“So there is this sense we are at risk of going backwards. And Pride should be a time when we come together as a community to stand up for things that are right, and to fight for each other. That’s what I hope. I hope people have a good time. I want it to be joyful and I want it to be provocative.”
Organisers said enhanced security would be in place to prevent anti-transgender activists from hijacking the event, after disruption last year. “Our position is they are not welcome,” Camps said. “They do not speak for the LGBT+ community. They do not speak for Pride in London. And our effort now focuses on making sure that the trans community, as well as everybody else, feels very safe, included, loved and valued at Pride in London.”
Biodegradable glitter, water bottle filling points and a special stage showcasing black and minority ethnic artists are among measures to boost the parade’s green and inclusivity credentials.
The LGBT+ equality charity Stonewall, which boycotted last year’s parade over claims the event was not diverse enough, is back to join 30,000 marchers from 594 groups. After constructive talks with organisers, Stonewall said it was proud to be marching in partnership with UK Black Pride, Mermaids, which supports gender diverse and transgender children and young people, and Level Up, a feminist organisation.
“We sat down with Stonewall and listened to their feedback, took it on board and showed them what we are doing,” said Camps. “We have beefed up our community engagement, and worked with community organisations to launch a new world area celebrating the BAME LGBT+ community.”
This year’s theme is Pride Jubilee, marking the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots – generally regarded as the birth of the Pride movement – as well as the 30th birthdays of both the Stonewall charity in the UK and the Albert Kennedy Trust, which helps homeless LGBT+ young people.
Billy Porter, a star of the Broadway musical Kinky Boots, will headline the Trafalgar Square stage, appearing with performers including the Eurovision and X Factor singer Saara Aalto and stars from TV series RuPaul’s Drag Race. Artists appearing on the women’s stage in Leicester Square include Toya Delazy, Heather Peace and Four of Diamonds.
The 30,000-strong parade will begin at midday at Portland Place and move through Oxford Circus, Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus, Lower Regent Street, Pall Mall and Trafalgar Square before finishing on Whitehall at about 5.30pm.
The number of official marchers is up from 25,000 last year. Organisers said they had cut the number of wristbands given to corporate bodies to enable the inclusion of more community groups.
Related Stories
Latest News
Top news around the world
Coronavirus Disease

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.

Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.

Around the World

Celebrity News

> Latest News in Media

Watch It
L.A. Beachgoers & Hikers Hit the Sand, Trails Despite Beach Closures | TMZ
April 04, 2020
JtcY523mXRE
Squirrels Take Over Park in Santa Monica During California Lockdown | TMZ
April 05, 2020
Gimfz-GC1js
British Actor Adam Bond Says UK's Coronavirus Policy is Dangerous | TMZ
April 04, 2020
OqPaMfiJ_cg
'Home Before Dark' Director Jon M. Chu Details How His Life Has Changed Due to COVID-19
April 05, 2020
yBOKUdsYuqM
Variety Launches Variety Intelligence Platform: VIP
April 03, 2020
lESKUjXQvDs
Everything You Need to Know About the Media Business
April 03, 2020
GBtW6QubDxM
Queen Elizabeth II Delivers Message of Hope Amid Coronavirus | E! News
April 05, 2020
NmRqGDgUntA
Channing Tatum & Jessie J Have Split Again | E! News
April 04, 2020
6r7WdAH482U
Meghan Markle's TV & Film Roles Through The Years | E! News
April 04, 2020
-dGynC0Qtc8
Nikki and Brie Bella take us inside their closets, talk pregnancy style | Page Six Celebrity News
April 01, 2020
T9art86o6FI
Jeannie Mai and Jeezy get 'Real' about post-pandemic plans | Page Six Celebrity News
April 03, 2020
sofzhfS1By0
Is ‘Bigger’ better? BET+ sex scene review | Page Six Celebrity News
April 01, 2020
1XBLbXU1rPQ
TV Schedule
Late Night Show
Watch the latest shows of U.S. top comedians

Sports

Latest sport results, news, videos, interviews and comments
Latest Events
08
Mar
ITALY: Serie A
Juventus - Inter Milan
08
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Manchester United - Manchester City
08
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Chelsea - Everton
08
Mar
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Betis - Real Madrid
08
Mar
ITALY: Serie A
AC Milan - Genoa
07
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Burnley - Tottenham Hotspur
07
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Arsenal - West Ham United
07
Mar
SPAIN: La Liga
Barcelona - Real Sociedad
07
Mar
SPAIN: La Liga
Atletico Madrid - Sevilla
Find us on Instagram
at @feedimo to stay up to date with the latest.
Featured Video You Might Like
W3y9zuI_F64 -7qCxIccihU pQ9gcOoH9R8 g5MRDEXRk4k tudKp5Vhs3k iwWHibhssSo kQr0XHPbICM 5NeCb7JxaRk u5xQKdNqazE 56CdjlzJqSA kw7uFRs-Az0 xNv0JZWLV7w
Copyright © 2020 Feedimo. All Rights Reserved.