Tens of thousands of visitors are expected in Brighton and Hove for the city's 20th Pride festival, the first to be run by business leaders.
Saturday's parade and ticketed festival in Preston Park is being run by a community interest company appointed by the city council in March. The event was free until 2010 but dogged by money problems and complaints about overcrowding and litter.
Alexandra Burke and Fatboy Slim will headline the festival in the park.'Rebuild bridges' Drag entertainer Stephen Richards, who performs as Lola Lasagne, said this year's Brighton and Hove Pride was going back to its roots. "Pride is a celebration of everything we have here," he said.
"Over the last couple of years there has been a disconnection from the community and now, with a new organisation at the helm, they have tried to rebuild those bridges to include the entire community - not just businesses but voluntary sectors as well. "The most important thing they did was to promise that £1 from every ticket sold would go to charity and so far over £15,000 has been handed over which is more money than has been given in about 10 years." 'Great showcase'
The festival is usually held in August but has been delayed this year to avoid a clash with the London Olympics. The parade, based on the theme the United Colours of Pride, starts at 11:00 BST from Madeira Drive and takes in King's Road, West Street and North Street before travelling up the A23 to Preston Park. St James's Street in the city centre will be closed from 18:00 BST for the Gay Village Party.
"Pride is a great showcase for the city and one of the biggest events in the calendar," said Sussex Police Chief Supt Graham Bartlett. "It will be business as usual in the he city centre, although we do expect some temporary disruption to traffic." Police have warned that anyone holding unlicensed events, including on the beach, could face prosecution.
Article: 31st August 2012 www.bbc.co.uk
Pride Angel will be holding a Market Stall in Preston Park, so why not come and have a chat about your lesbian and gay parenting options.