Pride Month: How was the annual LGBT+ celebration founded and when and where are events taking place?

Marches and street parades promoting sexual diversity still staged around the world as fight against homophobia continues

Joe Sommerlad
Monday 04 June 2018 18:43 BST
Taylor Swift gives passionate speech to mark start of Pride Month

The LGBT+ community comes together across the world every June to celebrate Pride Month.

While events actually take place across the summer, June was chosen to remember the Stonewall Riots that broke out in Greenwich Village, New York City, in summer 1969 after police raided one of the city's most popular gay clubs, prompting the regulars to fight back in protest.

A year later, marchers coordinated by activist Brenda Howard and others gathered in New York to celebrate "Christopher Street Liberation Day", alluding to the Manhattan address of the Stonewall Inn, which, along with parallel events in Los Angeles and San Francisco, marked the anniversary of a watershed moment in the history of LGBT+ rights.

An annual tradition was born, with more and more cities across the globe staging their own carnivals and street parades to celebrate gay, lesbian and trans culture.

US President Bill Clinton officially declared June "Gay and Lesbian Pride Month" in June 1999 before fellow Democrat Barack Obama extended its title to the more inclusive "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month" 10 years later.

The movement has served an important campaigning role over the years, calling for the mainstream acceptance of sexual diversity and drawing attention to a range of rights issues and injustices associated with the cause.

Pride has made huge strides in securing rights and fairer representation for LGBT+ citizens in the West and plays an important role in providing a platform from which the community can speak out against discrimination and prejudice.

But it still has work to do at a time when more than 70 countries around the world continue to enforce homophobic legislation. Turkish police dispersing a march in Istanbul with tear gas and rubber bullets in 2015 and banning the event in 2016 and 2017 outright on "security grounds" underlines the ongoing relevance of the demonstration.

More recent reports of homophobic violence being carried out in Chechnya and Indonesia further emphasise the need for education to encourage greater tolerance.

This year's London Pride parade is scheduled for Saturday 7 July while the UK's largest event takes place in Brighton on Saturday 4 August, coinciding with the Pride Festival held at Preston Park between 3 and 5 August, which is this year being headlined by the one and only Britney Spears.

Other key events taking place across Britain this summer include:

  • Pride Edinburgh - 16 June
  • Pride Glasgow - 14 July
  • Bristol Pride - 14 July
  • Newcastle-upon-Tyne - 21 July
  • Belfast Gay Pride Festival - 27 July-5 August
  • Norwich Pride - 28 July
  • Sheffield Pride - 28 July
  • Nottingham Pride - 29 July
  • Pride Cymru - 25 August
  • Manchester Pride - 25 August

In Europe, this summer's biggest Pride events are:

  • Riga, Latvia - 9 June
  • Rome, Italy - 9 June
  • Vienna, Austria - June 16
  • Dublin, Ireland - 21-30 June
  • Barcelona, Spain - 30 June
  • Paris, France - 30 June
  • Madrid, Spain - 7 July
  • Budapest, Hungary - 7-8 July
  • Frankfurt, Germany - 21 July
  • Berlin, Germany - 27-29 July
  • Oslo, Norway - 27-30 June
  • Amsterdam, the Netherlands - 3-5 August
  • Stockholm, Sweden - 4 August
  • Prague, Czech Republic - 11 August
  • Copenhagen, Denmark - 18 August

Even further afield, you can celebrate Pride in these cities:

  • Washington, DC, US - 7-10 June
  • Shanghai, China - 8-18 June
  • Los Angeles, US - 9-10 June
  • New York, US - 15-24 June
  • Toronto, Canada - 22-24 June
  • Chicago, US - 23-24 June
  • San Francisco, US - 23-24 June
  • Rio de Janiero, Brazil - 24 June
  • Vancouver, Canada - 5 August

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