Weston to host UK Pride 2021
PUBLISHED: 16:00 16 October 2019
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Weston Pride will work to build ‘the biggest event to hit the South West’ following the announcement that it will host the UK’s official celebrations in 2021.
The UK Pride Organisers Network (UKPON) announced its choice on Monday, with Weston beating off bids from Lancaster, Oxford and Cornwall.
Pride events are held to promote equal rights for people, regardless of sexuality, and the national event in 2021 is expected to attract tens of thousands of people to Weston.
Director of Weston Pride CIC, Nigel Briers, said: "This is huge for the LGBTQ+ community of North Somerset and people of Weston.
"Our community, now more than ever, needs to be visible when standing up against hate crime to create a safer and more inclusive county, to stand in solidarity with the 70 countries worldwide where people cannot be themselves in fear of persecution, or worse.
"I was overwhelmed by the support and well wishes received at the UK Pride Network Conference this month, it was fantastic to see Weston as a viable host of UK Pride 2021.
"The team and I look forward to working closer with the UK Pride Network, as well as local charities and organisations, to build the biggest event to hit the South West on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community.
"Weston Pride can only happen thanks to its volunteers, as well as businesses in the area who believe in this project - I am merely a cog in an organisation which can build a community of love and respect.
"Weston Pride is proud of the UK movement and beyond, and now it's time for the town to be proud of Weston's events."
The town's Pride has held its celebrations in Grove Park every summer for the past six years.
Director of communications at UKPON, Stephen Ireland, said: "Weston will play host to the official UK Pride events in 2021.
"The events aim to stand in solidarity with the rest of the world to help represent everything amazing in the UK in terms of diversity and inclusion.
"The town will work hard to learn from previous UK Pride events, and the network, as well as UKPON, is thrilled Weston will join the list of UK events in 2021."
Northern Ireland city Newry hosted the event this year and 2020's extravaganza will be in Newcastle.