Pride celebrations have returned to the capital this week and the annual central London parade is a highlight in a roster of events and exhibitions freckled across the week.
From 1pm this Saturday 28 June, more than 20,000 people will take part in the Pride in London Parade, setting off from Baker Street towards Trafalgar Square.
Expect to see the banners of corporations intermingled with charities, campaigners and special interest groups, with some participants giving live performances in the street while others display their impressive floats and costumes.
The eclectic parade line-up ranges from Groupon, the US Embassy in London and GayGooners to The Royal College of Midwives, LGBTory, and the London Gay Men’s Chorus (video below).
The route will travel through Oxford Circus and down into Regent Street before finishing at Whitehall.
As the parade coincides with Armed Forces Day, members of the military, who are also taking part in the Pride parade, will make their way to the Cenotaph as the procession nears its end.
Trafalgar Square, at the heart of Saturday’s events, will be putting on a stellar party for thousands.
Also open from 1pm, the free event in the Square is set to be a busy one. It was announced last week that Eurovisioner winner Conchita Wurst will headline this main event, preceded by Sinitta - who is trying to relaunch her pop career - and followed by Samantha Fox and choir The Pink Singers.
Other performers on the main stage include The Supreme Fabulettes, described by The Stage as "One hell of an all male singing girl group," and pop performer Ryan Jagger. The last act of the evening, DJ Adam Turner, starts spinning the tunes at 7.30pm.
The theme of this year’s week-long timetable of events is ‘Freedom to…’ which organisers say allows “individuals and groups to celebrate the freedom that Londoners have fought for and enjoy as well as to campaign on new issues.”
Austrian Wurst, whose real name is Tom Neurwith, said in a YouTube video: “I am really looking forward to seeing you all at Pride in London. Let us be proud about who we are and let us give a statement for love, respect and tolerance.
“Most of all, let us be proud and think about those LGBTI people around the world who can't make a Gay Pride in their countries.”
Further day events on Saturday have been planned for two more locations.
The Dean Street & Women's Stage will be running from 2-8pm including performances from former X-Factor contender Lucy Spraggan and duo Doremi Fly.
The Golden Square Rainbow Fete, near Old Compton Street, is a "chilled pop-up festival site for all ages," with bouncy castles, ping pong and face paint from 11am-9pm. Performances will take place in the bandstand and those needing a bit of a zen-filled break from the revelries can do yoga at 6.15pm.
A number of after parties are taking place, including the ProudWomen event at the Adam Street Club just around the corner.
Salsa, Raggaeton and Colombia's match again Uruguay at 9pm can be found at the 'Exilio @ The Latin Groove' after party in Archway from 7pm, while an Irreverent Dance Party will get underway at the Resistance Gallery in east London, with dancing, cake and raffle prizes.
Expect other parts of London, particularly Soho, to be alive with a street party-like atmosphere.Reuse content