Croydon’s First PRIDEfest 2016

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Hundreds of people from mostly the LGBT community turned up on a hot, summers day to the very first Croydon Pride, on 28th August which was organised just in six weeks.

Croydon’s first openly gay Mayor Wayne Trakas-Lawlor  said ‘this is  the first time Croydon Council has supported a Pride Festival in the borough and, indeed, the first time in a very long time since any Pride-related event was celebrated here at all”.

Everyone seem to be having a good time, with generally a positive reaction from the general public who took photos of people in the Parade.

The Pride was a free event, not ticketed and the atmosphere was ‘happy’, family-orientated and not ‘loud and rowdy’ so it was a really nice and pleasant event, not too large and overwhelming. It was easy too get to as well, and you didn’t have crowds of people on the trains unlike at BrightonPride.  The police looked chilled out and relaxed.  I didn’t see any large police vans hiding in side streets. I think smaller Prides can be a lot safer and less stressy.  I didn’t see people so plastered they were causing annoyance.

However, some revellers were littering the streets with plastic bottles, beer cans and cigarette butts but a few considerate community minded volunteers helped pick up their rubbish. Local businesses were pleased to see so many people turn up although some hadn’t realised there was event despite the Council handing out several leaflets.

We went to a local independent cafe, and ordered a meal with soft drinks, and kept well away from the Boozy bars; it also meant that we had a seat too.

One of the people on the podium did a shout out to various sexualities   but one young asexual was disappointed that asexuals were not given a mention.  Organisers at Croydon Pride are keen to do more for asexuals at the next Croydon Pride.

PHOTO BELOW: CroydonPride Parade

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