30 June 2022

Pride 2022: HUNGER’s guide to celebrating the weekend in London

Celebrate 50 years since the first historic pride march by catching headline acts and much, much more...

This weekend, after three years away from the streets of London, PRIDE turns 50, and it promises to be bigger, prouder, and louder than ever. It’s certainly a big deal; a quarter century ago, this Friday, the Gay Liberation Front led the capital’s first-ever Pride March from Trafalgar Square; paving the way for countless LGBTQ+ people to experience equal rights and visibility. 

Since 1972, London Pride has become one of the most popular LGBTQ+ celebrations in the world, and this year, it’s #1 globally!  To mark this momentous occasion, on Saturday, a parade will follow a section of the original 1972 route, beginning at Hyde Park, towards Picadilly Circus, before concluding at Trafalgar Square, which will boast one of four massive entertainment stages. 

It’s sure to be an action-packed day, and to ensure you make the most of it, HUNGER spoke to Pride in London spokesperson, Haven Thorn, about some of the unmissable events and some tips and tricks for Pride newbies… 

The 2022 Pride in London Parade — Saturday, July 2, 12 pm, at Hyde Park Corner 

The iconic parade will be returning to London’s streets with over 30,000 participants from all sections of the LGBTQ+ community, as well as more than 400 community groups. The parade, which will kick off at Hyde Park Corner on Saturday at 12pm, is honouring the original 1972 protest march, and the significant stops it passed along the way. This year, Pride in London is petitioning the UK government to ban conversion therapy, reform Gender Recognition, as well as providing equal protection for LGBT+ communities against hate crime, end its hostile environment towards migrants, establish a national Aids memorial, and to take a leading role in tackling violence and discrimination against LGBT+ people around the globe.”

The London stages —  Trafalgar Square, Leicester Square, Golden Square stage, and the Soho stage on Dean Street 

There will be four free attendance stages across central London, and the entertainment will run from Saturday noon. These stages will host over 100 performers, speeches, and community leaders — oh, and there will be a number of surprise performances to boot! A number of stars of the LGBTQ+ community will be welcoming the crowd on Saturday, but we’ll be looking out for Ava Max, Emeli Sandé and Samantha Mumba headlining Trafalgar Square, then, Cat Burns, Siena Liggins, and Eva Max will be making appearances on the Golden Square Stage, and on Dean Street, you can catch Justin Vivian Bond in the headline spot. There are many, many more, check out prideinlondon.org for the entire lineup.

The “50 seconds of All Our Pride” — everywhere! 

On Saturday, Pride in London will be holding a “50 seconds of All Our Pride” to pay homage to the first historic pride protest and to celebrate all the progress made since. You can celebrate this in any way you see fit — including joyous cheering, silent reflection, or even an outcry demanding equality for all. It’s a powerful moment for everyone to come together as one.

The Picadilly Lights — Piccadilly Circus 

Piccadilly Lights, the world’s most famous advertising screen, will light up the sky with rainbow brilliance for a colourful celebration this year, so make sure you meander over. 

As Thorn tells us, this year we will see a record number of Pride newcomers as LGBTQ+ youth who came out in 2020 and 2021 wouldn’t have had an in-person Pride experience. “Remember that Pride is for everyone,” Thorn urges. “Queer or not, you shouldn’t be worried that you don’t fit in at Pride; put that thought out of your head right away! Pride is for everyone, and is a chance for you to celebrate not just your gender and sexuality, but always as yourself – and you’re perfect! 

“With that said, Pride attracts people from all walks of life, including sexualities and gender, so it’s crucial to keep an open mind and be respectful when meeting new people or seeing new things. Pride is a judgement free-zone, spanning five decades of queer history, and kindness, acceptance, and mutual respect are of the utmost importance,” he adds. 

  • Writer Nessa Humayun
  • Images Courtesy of Pride in London

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