Nottingham city centre was turned into a sea of rainbow colours at the weekend as thousands of people joined in the Nottinghamshire Pride celebrations.
Spectators lined the streets on Saturday (July 30) as a vibrant march kicked off the event which culminated in an afternoon of fun, dancing and laughter as a talented line-up of performers dazzled the crowds.
Organised and run by a team of dedicated volunteers, this year’s event, with the theme ‘We See You’ in support of the region’s LGBTQ+ community, was bigger and better than ever.
Last year’s scaled-back celebration saw 9,000 people flock to the city centre to take part, and this year’s festivities marked the city’s first full Pride event since the pandemic.
Nottinghamshire Pride chair Leigh Ellis was thrilled with the success of the day, which drew 15,000 people to the march, and saw an eclectic array of singers, dancers, speakers, performers and DJs take to the stage on Heathcoat Street in Hockley.
Leigh said: “We were expecting a good turnout but this far exceeded our expectations. The atmosphere was joyful and so many people have told us what a great time they had. It was wonderful to be back in full force.
“This event serves as a call to people to support our LGBTQ+ community and all those whose voices sometimes go unheard. With this year’s theme, we wanted to shine a light on all marginalised groups, including trans and non-binary, young and older LGBTQ+ people and people living with HIV/AIDs.”
The organisers worked closely with Nottingham City Council to put on the signature march, starting in Lister Gate and led by a Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service fire engine.
The spectacular procession of colour and noise wound its way through the streets to Broad Street. More than 50 market stalls in neighbouring roads were hosted by organisations in support of the community.
The day’s proceedings included a speech from Nottingham-born MP Nadia Whittome, who represents Nottingham East.
Performers included David Bowie tribute band Miss Bowie and the New Killer Stars, singers Tom Aspaul, Jamie Fuxx, Rob Green and Bexx, Britney Spears tribute act Michaela Weeks and comedy cabaret favourites Scream Queenz. YouTube comedy star Charity Shop Sue also performed a DJ set.
The not-for-profit event, which has had a presence in the city since 1997, is funded entirely by sponsorships, partnerships and donations. Sponsors and partners this year included Sladen Estates, Boots, Capital One, Cartwright Communications, Kuku Creative, Baxter Freight, Experian .
Craig Martin, co-chair of Nottinghamshire Pride, said: “We would like to thank our sponsors and everyone who supported us in making the event such a big success.
“The march was one of the most important aspects of the day, as people were able to show their solidarity for the whole community. Pride represents something different to so many different people, and that’s what makes it so special. We can’t wait to see what will happen next year!”
To find out more about Nottinghamshire Pride, visit https://www.nottinghamshirepride.co.uk/