Eastbourne celebrates diversity with Mardi Gras-style Pride party

Bourne Out is organising the the Mardi Gras-style celebration - pictured with Mike Hopkins, principal of Sussex Downs College which is a sponsor
Bourne Out is organising the the Mardi Gras-style celebration - pictured with Mike Hopkins, principal of Sussex Downs College which is a sponsor

Eastbourne’s first ever Pride event will take place tomorrow (Saturday, July 22).

The town’s celebration of diversity will include a parade, a day of live music in Princes Park and a party on the pier.

Mandy Smith, chair of LGBT group Bourne Out which will host the event, said, “This is not just an event for the LGBT community. We are keen to see lots of families too.”

The parade will start at 12.30pm, opened by well-known LGBT campaigner Peter Tatchell, and head to the park for seven hours of music and celebrations, organisers say.

Len McCluskey, general secretary of the Unite union and Lord Collins of Highbury will also join the march from Langney Point to Princes Park.

Organiser Betty Gallacher said, “There will be non-stop music and entertainment for seven hours and it’s going to be amazing.”

Mandy said, “We have a great entertainment line-up ranging from X-Factor singers to an ABBA tribute band. It’s an event for everyone. Please come along.”

A party from 9pm on Eastbourne Pier will see the fun continue into the night.

Brighton and Hove bus company has made a donation to Eastbourne Pride and will provide transport to the event from Eastbourne Railway Station and Brighton.

Managing director Martin Harris said, “We’re proud to be supporting the Pride Festival. We have supported Brighton Pride for many years so the opportunity to help along the coast at Eastbourne is one we are delighted to make the most of.”