Rainbow flags flew, colourful costumes were worn and musicians made some noise as thousands of people joined Leicester Pride’s biggest-ever party on Saturday.
De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) staff, students and members of De Montfort Students’ Union were at the event to celebrate lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender and non-binary communities.
DMU partnered with the organisers of Leicester Pride after learning that this year’s event, the ninth annual Pride, might not go ahead.
Organisers said 3,000 people joined the parade and 10,000 people attend the all-day celebrations at Victoria Park with stalls, sideshows, music from X-Factor’s Union J and musicians.
Parade manager Josh Hargreaves, who is a public engagement officer with #DMUlocal, said it was a tremendous event.
He said: “There was a really good atmosphere all day, a real family atmosphere. The parade was so big that by the time we had reached Victoria Park there were people just arriving at the bottom of New Walk."
As part of the sponsorship deal signed with #DMUlocal, the university was given sponsorship rights and had a presence at the festival to showcase the community work undertaken by students and academics as part of #DMUlocal.
Professor Julie Fish, director of DMU’s Centre for LGBT Research, took part in the parade carrying the flag “DMU: Proud Sponsors of Leicester Pride”. She is researching cancer inequalities experienced by LGBT patients and was able to talk to people about their experiences.
Julie said: “It was a fantastic Pride, so pleased to see so many people join the parade and come to the celebrations in Victoria Park.”
Martyn Parker, chairman and director of Leicester Pride, said: “We are in our ninth year now and this year’s Pride has been the best we have ever done.
“The parade itself was a lot bigger than previous year. We think we had about 3,000 people taking part this time.
“Pride is an opportunity for people to come along and be themselves and get the help and support they might need.
“They can bring their friends and family along to show them who they are.”
* DMU steps in with funding to help Leicester Pride
* DMU named one of the best HE employers in Stonewall Index
* #DMUglobal joins New York Pride
Leicestershire Police and Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service were also part of the parade.
Assistant Chief Constable Phil Kay, who is currently seconded to the College of Policing, said: “I was proud to march at the fantastic Leicester Pride again on Saturday. This year, my colleagues and I marched in uniform for the first time, albeit with a rainbow twist!”
Posted on Monday 4th September 2017