With over 450,000 people estimated to have visited Brighton Pride over the weekend, it was inevitable there would be reported instances of both overcrowding and homophobic attacks.
While most revellers enjoyed the amazing weather and good vibes, a few rotten apples soon made themselves known. A vicious attack in a takeaway resulted in one 21 year-old man sustaining a broken jaw and stitches to his face and his 22 year-old friend receiving minor facial injuries. Three men entered the kebab shop and made a series of derogatory insults and comments about homosexuality before arguing with and attacking the young men.
In a further incident, Twitter user Benjamin Butterworth followed up a post about enjoying his time at Brighton Pride with video of a man on his train home threatening to kill gay people. As Benjamin stated, “He held one hand down his pants, and gazing over us he declared that he had a knife. He told us he would stab every gay person on the train. ‘You’re in London now,’ he said, ‘we carry knives here.'”
On train back from @PrideBrighton, a man threatened to pull a knife on me and others and stab us for being gay. He called us peadophiles and dirty and shouted gay people need to all be killed. The video is a fraction of what he said, as was too scared & shaken to film. pic.twitter.com/j60xfcPua4
— Benjamin Butterworth (@benjaminbutter) August 5, 2018
With the reputation for being the UK’s biggest Pride event, overcrowding also proved to be an issue. Headliner Britney Spears attracted a huge 57,000 strong crowd all pushing into the limited viewing area. There were reports of crushing, with some viewers becoming trapped and others having to climb over security barriers.
The overcrowding also led to the closing down of the local train station for fears of passenger safety. Police blamed the rail company on the situation which left thousands stranded.
— Sussex News (@HeartSussexNews) August 5, 2018
The rail company responded with a statement from a spokesperson who said “We had standby trains. We had an additional 15 trains available. The issue here is the control of the passengers back to the station, so when crowds started to return into the station, the local police force needed to marshal those and this is one of the points that we’ll be taking up with the organisers.”
Stranded passengers were left to spend the night on the beach.
© 2018 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.