Weston Pride Festival returns for 2015

PUBLISHED: 13:00 26 July 2015

Pride

Pride

Archant

WESTON Pride Festival is returning for 2015 – with a promise to ‘learn from the mistakes’ of last year.

North Somerset Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Forum, has organised a family-friendly event with an Alice In Wonderland theme to take place next month.

But months of fundraising, culminating in a sky dive this weekend, have taken place to pay off the debts of last year.

Pride Festival 2014 was hugely popular, but was marred when the then-treasurer was unable to pay back the debts incurred from the festival, leaving creditors out of pocket.

A spokesman for the North Somerset LGBT Forum said: “We acknowledge the mistakes made and have reflected on how best to address the remaining debts owed to some local businesses and clear the path for the delivery of this year’s event.

“The newly-formed committee has worked hard throughout the year and an opportunity arose to take to the skies to fundraise.

“Every penny owed will be paid and no-one will be left without their debts cleared. With support from the North Somerset community and further afield we will ensure that 2014’s shortfall doesn’t see the end to this celebration of equality.

“Careful, focused individuals have rebuilt the jigsaw using the learning and new resources made available to bring Weston Pride back for 2015.”

This year, the LGBT Forum has applied for a number of grants prior to the event – including an appeal to Weston Town Council, which agreed to give the project £500.

Speaking at the most recent town council meeting, Councillor James Clayton said: “I think we need to support this, it was definitely a successful event last year going by social media and I think as a council we should be supporting them to put on this event.

“Hopefully it is something the group can build up and make more and more successful each year.”

Robbie Burns of Amazing Events is one of the creditors who was not paid after last year’s festival, and has been working with the forum to recoup the costs.

He said: “As creditors of last year’s inaugural event we want to see your group succeed and hope that some headway will be made towards repaying the outstanding monies.

“We, the creditors, wish your team every success.”

The North Somerset LGBT forum says it has arranged to meet with the remaining creditors before the event to hand over any leftover fees.

The event is planned for August 29 from 11am-8pm in Clarence Park with a theme of Alice In Wonderland, to celebrate the 150th anniversary since the book was released.

This year, Waterstones book store is supporting the event and will be holding a Mad Hatter’s tea party with a competition for best hat.

The event will kick off with a parade from Princess Royal Square, meeting at 11am to parade along the seafront and into Clarence Park arriving at the park around noon.

Tickets, piced £1-3, are available from Waterstones in the Sovereign Shopping Centre.

To book a stall, call Linda on 07974 554456 or Teresa on 07772 113949.

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