More Than A Million Expected At First London Pride Since Pandemic
| Last updated
More than a million people were expected to have turned up to the first London Pride festival since the pandemic.
Members of the LGBTQ+ community and their allies joined the march in the UK’s capital today, dressed in rainbow items of clothing, as well as glitter and sequins as they joined the parade from Hyde Park to Whitehall.
Over 600 groups within the community will have joined the parade, which has had over 30,000 people registered to attend the event.
The parade, which organisers have dubbed the 'biggest and most inclusive event in history', will also see a slew of big music artists taking the stage at four separate venues around Central London.
Elsewhere, other performers on the day will include 2018 Eurovision-winner Netta, as well as Samantha Mumba and Kat Graham.
The Israeli music competition winner previously told the Standard ahead of her appearance at London Pride that LGBTQ+ rights are a 'matter of life and death' as she explained how winning the competition helped one of her transgender fans to come out.
She said: “If we stop celebrating Pride, then it scares me to say that rights can go away.
“If we sleep on this, it can run away from us. And I feel that is so important this protest is so much alive, it’s crucial to who we are as people. It’s a matter of life and death.”
Elsewhere at the march, Labour leader Keir Starmer and deputy leader Angela Rayner also joined the march in support of the cause.
The London Ambulance Service also joined the festival with an ambulance float to honour LGBTQ+ staff, volunteers, patients and local communities, and was decorated especially for the occasion with a Progress Pride flag.
Sadiq Khan also said of the celebrations: “We’re back after the last two and a half years or so. This year is the 50th anniversary of Pride, celebrating this community, celebrating the progress made, but also continuing to campaign and never be complacent.
“We saw this time last week an attack in Oslo just hours before that parade, where two people lost their lives and more than 20 were injured.
“So, we’ve got to be conscious of the fact that there’s still a danger to this community of discrimination, bias and violence. But allies like me are really important to support this community.”
The Mayor Of London also added that there was still a 'danger' to the LGBTQ+ community and warned against being 'complacent' during London’s Pride march.
If you’ve been affected by any of these issues and want to speak to someone in confidence, contact the LGBT Foundation on 0345 3 30 30 30, 10am–6pm Monday to Friday, or email [email protected]