The Birmingham Pride 2020 festival would’ve attracted over 100,000 people to the city over this Spring bank-holiday weekend but, of course, it has been Corona-postponed to 2020. Thankfully the organisers didn’t want to let the weekend pass without marking the occasion, which aptly would’ve had a theme of “Stronger Together”. They did a great job of moving some of the festival to a Digital celebration streamed over social media platforms, showcasing some of our old favourites as well as burgeoning talent – you can see some screenshots from the Digital event below.
Pride weekend is usually an opportunity for us to catch up with people we don’t often have chance to see and yesterday during Digital Pride we had a social media frenzy talking to our group of friends about the live acts. It was a great excuse to connect. I feel privileged that over the last couple of months while we’ve all been safe but nonetheless stuck at home I’ve been able to spend lots of time on the telephone and on videoconferences with our friends and family – though one more online quiz may drive me to distraction!
This year’s Birmingham Pride comes at the end of the UK’s Mental Health Awareness Week (MHAW), and I think all of us have a renewed understanding of life’s mental health challenges as we’ve been at home during this crisis. You can check out the free support on offer from the Birmingham LGBT service on their website (including confidential support on domestic violence, wellbeing, sexual health, and trans wellbeing), or if you’re not looking specifically for LGBTQ+ related support then check out the sources on the MHAW website.
This year’s Digital Pride saw intros from West Midlands Mayor Andy Street, festival director Lawrence Barton, campaigner Peter Tatchell, and Andrew Moffat the assistant head teacher at the centre of the No Outsider’s anti-LGBT protests last year. It also saw cameo appearances from headliners like Kelly Rowland, Olly Alexander, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, and Jake Shears. Regular local acts were also well-represented with the orangeade-effervescent Miss Marty, Miss Penny, and Baga Chipz amongst others.
We’re already looking forward to next year’s Pride scheduled for Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th May 2021! Keep an eye on their website for details (https://www.birminghampride.com). They’ve also announced that next year’s festival and street party will be free for kids under 12 years of age when accompanied by an adult, as well as for senior citizens over 65 years of age.
And now the screenshots……