From June 24-July 9, London becomes a little gayer as the Pride Festival takes over the capital. Bringing together people from all walks of life and sexual orientations, the LGBTQ+ community comes together to celebrate love in all its forms and everyone’s invited. With exhibitions, film festivals and meet-ups hosted all festival long, the creme de la creme of the celebration is the Pride Parade on July 8 – the biggest in the country.
Hosted by the LGBT+ Community in London, the festival is run entirely by volunteers and attracts hundreds of thousands of people annually. Dating all the way back to the very first UK Gay Pride Rally in 1972, it’s come a long way from its first incarnation. Besides being a place of joyous celebration, it’s also been a place of political fury following controversial anti-LGBTQ+ regulations in the 80s and raw pain in the wake of the Orlando nightclub shooting just last year.
London Pride Parade 2017
All over the country, pride parades are held but the London edition takes the cake. With thousands of people joining the rainbow crowds, drag queens stomping their ground and glitter at every corner, it’s one of the best festivals in London. The parade stretches from Portland Place to Whitehall and you can spectate from barriers along the way – Oxford Circus and Regent Street tend to be the most crowded so it’s worth dispersing down along the route.
When: 1pm – 4:30pm, 8 July
Where: From Portland Place to Whitehall
Britain on Film: LGBT Britain
Go beyond Moonlight and Weekend at this LGBTQ+ film festival at BFI Southbank. Bringing little known indies and bigger names to the silver screen, you’ll be able to see into the worlds of those in the community. More visibility, yass queen!
When: 6:10pm-12:10pm, 27 June
Where: BFI Southbank
Queer British Art 1861-1967 Exhibition
For the first time ever, the Tate is bringing LGBTQ+ artists to the forefront of their exhibitions. It’s come at a deliberate time as well – this is the 50th year since male homosexuality was decriminalised in England. With works by Dora Carrington, David Hockney, John Singer Sargent and more, it’s an introspective look into how self-identity come hand in hand.
When: 10am-10pm, 5 April – 7 October
Where: Tate Britain
Price: £16.50/£14.50 for concessions
Pride Prom 2017
London Pride is celebrating the younger members of the community with a dedicated prom, where under 18s can dance to their hearts content. This year’s theme is Alice in Wonderland so bust out those blue apron dresses, bunny ears and serve up rainbow caterpillar realness – everybody deserves an awkward prom photo.
When: 7:30pm-11:59pm, 1 July
Where: The Pirate Castle
Price: Early bird £9/On the door £10
The Official Pride in London Ladies After-Party
All the single ladies? This after party at The Trading House is the place to be for lesbians, bisexuals and transmen and women to make a feminine connection. Hosted in a historical Grade II building, this classy party has an exciting line-up of DJs playing everything from 90s R&B anthems to trap.
When: 9:30am – 3:00am, 8 – 9 July
Where: The Trading House
All images sourced via Pride in London facebook
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