Bournemouth Gay Pride 2006
Bournemouth Pride or “Bourne Free” as its called, is an annual celebration of all diversities that live in Bournemouth and the constant strive towards universal equality for all – through celebration, entertainment and awareness.
The Bourne Free Pride Festival 2006 took place on the 8th of July following a hugely popular event last year. For 2006 there was an even bigger programme packed with great live entertainment. The unique Beachfront Parade kicked off at 1pm from Alum Chine, a colourful celebration of equality and diversity along Bournemouth’s stunning beach promenade towards the Pier Approach and into the Lower Gardens. The Bandstand in the Lower Gardens played host to top acts all afternoon, from camp pop to hilarious drag and cabaret, celebrities included Chenai from The X Factor, the Intenso Project from the Ministry of Sound and The Fleurettes, winners of Drag Idol. The Bolts dance arena at the Pier Showbar, had some of the best DJs around and plenty of refreshments on offer, plus it was also a chance to cool off from the hot south coast sun. In the Lower Gardens you could also find Charity & Information Stalls
to browse and many people had a picnic on the grass watching the live acts
while soaking up some sun. And of course there was the beautiful beach to
chill out and make a splash.
Bourne Free was originally set up when a far right organisation was due to come to Bournemouth and aggressively preach how, homosexuality was wrong. Many prominent figures and active members of the many gay communities in the south came together to organise a wonderful party in the Bournemouth Gardens to keep the many gay communities away from the bigots and keep them together for a fun day of celebration, rather than a hostile day of violence.
By the end of the day, those who had come together just weeks before the aggressive preachers came to Bournemouth, the Bourne Free Committee felt that we could have done so much more if we had more time. The day went without a hitch, with lots of well known entertainers taking the Bournemouth Bandstand Stage supporting diversity, with a massive balloon release and two minute silence for victims of hate crime, Bournemouth's first Gay Pride March and most importantly – the determination for everyone to get back together and do it all again the next year, but this time as an official charity with official roles to organise the best celebration every year that included everyone for everyone.
Now Bourne Free has become an annual celebration in the heart of Bournemouth for everyone to see the differences in Bournemouth and the fun that can be had by all.
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