Manchester Pride's 'Big Weekend' takes place over the bank holiday weekend at the end of August more info: ManchesterPride.com
Its the largest Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) festival in the United Kingdom, and this year was been backed by the country’s three biggest political leaders, from the Conservative, Liberal Democrat and Labour parties.
Prime Minister David Cameron encouraged the mixture of sports, arts, films, parties and ‘Best of British’ theme which he stated “will be a great success. I also want to congratulate everyone who has been involved in growing Manchester Pride over the years; these events don’t organise themselves and require a lot of hard work, but they play an important part in the cultural life of our country and you should be proud of what you’ve achieved.”
Leading on from this was Lib Dem’s Nick Clegg, who said: “Manchester Pride is to be applauded for its work in raising awareness of the discrimination and difficulties affecting the lives of LGBT people and I would like to sincerely commend all those involved with Manchester Pride on reaching this very special milestone.”
MP Ed Miliband of the Labour Party actually took part in last year’s Manchester Pride parade, and exclaimed that he enjoyed showing his support for equality. Miliband said: “The popularity of the event shows just how far we have come in recent years in the campaign for equality from tackling hate crimes through to civil partnerships. I am proud of the progress we have made towards LGBT equality over the last decade, but there is still more to do.”
At a time where we are all coming to terms with the fact that there is a lot of disruption and contempt in the United Kingdom, it is fantastic to see the three most influential politicians in this country come together to support something as positive as Manchester Pride.
Jackie Crozier, festival director of Manchester Pride, said: “Regardless of the party you support it is a great thing to know all three main political parties, and their leaders, support the move towards equality for LGBT people. Manchester Pride are thrilled to have their support and now look forward even more positively to our 21st birthday and 2011 festival!”
Jackie has led Manchester Pride for four years, been a part of it for six and has done a lot of fantastic things for Manchester and its LGBT community. She has also just won Community Champion of the Year in the 2011 Homo Hero Awards. So congratulations to you, Jackie and thanks for all you hard work. Manchester Pride would not be the same without you!
Another fantastic sight to see in this years parade was a professional Rugby League team: the Sheffield Eagles on a float supporting Pride Sports campaign to tackle Homophobia in sport. I chatted to several of the 1st team players Alex Szostak (second row) and Corey Hanson (centre) who although are straight themselves wanted to promote equality in sport whatever your sexuality. I was really impressed by their attitude to the subject, they are true role models.
Other popular entries in the parade included the Coronation Street float, Essential Nightclub, Selfridges hunks in trunks, Pan Ann, the Police, Manchester Sharks water polo, Village Spartans Rugby Club, Village Manchester Football Club and Wynnie La Freak's one woman protest.
Manchester Pride are thrilled to announce their total figures for the 2011 festival and 21st birthday: "We have successfully made £105,000 that will be distributed between LGBT and HIV groups - an outstanding £7,000 of this came from our Pride Dinner last November. This news comes as no surprise after what was an extremely fantastic one for Manchester Pride, as we have seen a continued amount of support from all of those involved in our festival, and had a brilliant line-up across the board. We would like to thank all of you who came to this year's festival and all of those who gave up their own time to help it be the success that it was. So let's toast once more to a great event, finally hitting the £1M profit out of the park and looking forward to the years ahead!"
Manchester Pride's 4 day 'Big Weekend' takes place every year over summer bank holiday at the end of August.
For more info log
onto the web site at:
The 4* Velvet is an excellent award winning boutique hotel located on Canal Street. The new, cheaper 3 * Premier Inn Manchester is just a couple of minutes from Canal Street and close to the Arndale Shopping Centre. For a wider selection of hotels in Manchester click here.