Pride Weekend Wrap-up

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Photos by Paul Adams

It’s official: Brighton & Hove Pride 2018 weekend was the biggest ever! Four hundred and fifty thousand people visited the city across the weekend, including those who flocked to its beaches to take advantage of the good weather.

The Festival included for the first time, a Sunday rainbow family-friendly day, LOVEBN1FEST that was capped off by high-energy performances from Nile Rodgers and CHIC, as well as Jess Glynne. The highlight of the weekend for many was Britney Spears who wowed the crowd of 55,000 at Saturday’s Brighton Pride Festival, with the first performance of her ‘Piece of Me’ European Tour.

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Brighton & Hove Pride Community Parade was also the largest, and most diverse ever, with over 300,000 people participating or watching the ‘Colour My World’ themed spectacular.

Despite the hot weather, the number of people who required medical attention across the weekend was in proportion with crowd numbers, and there were no fatalities. Police reported that only 40 arrests were made across the City for the weekend.

Brighton Pride contracted Cityclean and additional private contractors to clean Preston Park, the Pride Village Party and the Old Steine on Saturday evening and on Sunday evening. Cityclean also began cleaning operations city-wide and along the Parade route as soon as the Community Parade had passed.

Pride-goers left Preston Park smoothly on both evenings. The hugely successful weekend was not seamless however, as visitors experienced difficulties accessing trains on Saturday evening and early Sunday morning. In addition, there have been concerns about the volume of rubbish on the City’s streets this weekend.

Paul Kemp, Managing Director of Brighton Pride CIC said

“We want to thank all of our partner agencies, including Brighton & Hove City Council, Sussex & Surrey Police, SE Coast Ambulance, HM Coastguard, CityClean, St John Ambulance, as well as major transport providers, Brighton & Hove Buses and GTR and local residents without whom the weekend would not be possible.

Brighton Pride attracts a large crowd from Brighton & Hove and further afield to enjoy the city and its beaches, to see the Parade and take part in the Festival. We are so pleased that our event brings a shared economic benefit to the City, to the tune of more than £18M.”

Paul Kemp also said:
“We have been really encouraged by the quick response by GTR who successfully delivered thousands of people into the city and their real willingness for an ongoing partnership approach. GTR responded quickly to our initial concerns. We thank them for their response and appreciate their genuine support for the Brighton & Hove Pride Festival.
“It is encouraging that all partners acknowledge there are lessons to be learned, and we are committed to working closely together to make future events even more successful.
“Brighton Pride contributes to the clean-up of the City. Along with our partner agencies, we want to work even more closely with partners and businesses under a City-wide plan for major events, to share the rewards and the responsibilities for keeping Brighton & Hove safe, clean and welcoming to visitors and residents alike.”
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