Well done to the organisers of Pride for making this year’s the biggest and best yet. It was an incredible carnival of colour, sound, fun and politics.
250,000 people attend Pride in Brighton and Hove these days and people come for so many different reasons. Some will be there to be in a safe and celebratory space for LGBT people because our world still contains so much homophobia. Some will be there to celebrate what Pride means for our city. So many families line the parade route which is amazing, with parents having the chance to show their kids that whoever they fall in love with later in life they will always be there to celebrate it. And there are those just there to party and have fun in the most fun-loving city in Britain – fine by me!
I remember very well the first time I marched in Pride. I was ridiculously nervous as I had only just ‘come out’. So each year I’m always very aware that there will be others of all ages marching with trepidation and nerves. You can’t spot them from the sidelines but believe me they’re there and it will be one of the most important days in their lives.
In the last few weeks people have been executed in Iran, murdered in Turkey, and criminalised in dozens of other countries simply for being gay. Pride may seen frivolous to some, but believe me it is a beacon of hope to huge numbers of people across the world.
This year’s parade takes place in a world where security threats are a real danger and also very unpredictable. Thank you so much to our police and all public servants for keeping us safe, healthy, and able to have a great time. And thank you to residents for putting up with the disruption, I know it can be a pain but it really is worth it.
You now get to have a break from me for a while! I’m heading to the continent for my first fortnight’s break since I became a candidate in 2013. I’m looking forward to returning refreshed and with my batteries charged for all the hard work to come. I hope the sun continues to shine on Hove and Portslade while I’m away. And don’t worry, my office will still be open and the team can easily get hold of me with any urgent issues so please feel free to contact me or use the office as usual. All the best, Peter