London Pride and Black Pride organisers say it was their biggest year yet

Organisers believe that this year's march was the biggest one ever with over 1.5 million people on the streets of London.

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The London Pride March was launched by Mayor Sadiq Khan on Saturday, July 6. It was made up of more than 30,000 people from over 600 community groups, organisations and businesses. Organisers of London Pride believe there were 1.5 million people on the streets of the capital for Pride, making it their largest ever.

The theme of the event was ‘Pride Jubilee.’ 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots 

Many celebrities took part in the march including Ian McKellen, Billy Porter and Sam Smith. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said in a tweet: “Pride is a protest, a show of solidarity and a celebration.” Outgoing Prime Minister, Thresa May, wished attendees “a happy Pride,” in a video shared on Pride In London’s twitter account.

In this year’s London Pride March a message of inclusivity to all members of the LGBT+ community was carried throughout following anti-transgender campaigners placing themselves at the forefront of last year’s march. The group had distributed anti-trans leaflets and said that trans people were a threat to lesbians. This year the ‘L with the T’ – a group of lesbians and queer women – was one of many to lead the parade with placards such as “Stop consulting bigots on trans rights,” and “Support trans kids.” 

Following on from Pride in London, UK Black Pride took place July 7. The event which started in 2005 at Southend-on-Sea has become Europe’s largest celebration for LGBT+ people of African, Asian, Caribbean, Latin American and Middle Eastern descent. The event previously took place at Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens but this year moved to Haggerston Park in London.

On its website, Black Pride describes itself as “a safe space to celebrate diverse sexualities, gender identities, cultures, gender expressions and backgrounds and we foster, represent and celebrate Black LGBTQ and QTIPOC (Queer, Transgender and Intersex People of Colour) culture through education, the arts, cultural events and advocacy.”

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan showed support for Black Pride in a tweet: 

“As Mayor, I’m proud to be supporting UKBlackPride. Racism, homophobia and transphobia have no place in our city. Here in London, you’ll always be free to be who you want to be and love who you want to love. #LondonIsOpen”

Black Pride supports all marginalised folk in the community including refugees and asylum seekers. The board of directors of the event removed the UK’s Home Office stall days before the event was set to take place. In a statement the group said “In light of the Home Office’s continued discrimination against the communities we represent, and the work we and other organisations connected to us do in support of LGBTQ refugees and asylum seekers, the UK Black Pride board of directors have taken the decision to remove the Home Office’s stall from our event.”

 

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