50 years after the first Brighton ‘Gay Pride March’ in the city, Brighton & Hove Pride defied the wind, rain and travel disruptions to return for another spectacular year. It was a weekend packed full of campaigning, protest and partying in equal measure. After what has been a challenging year, it was a fantastic celebration with members of the LGBTQ+ community and allies across the city coming together for a safe and happy Pride.
Pride Parade 2023
Under this year’s theme, ‘DARE TO BE DIFFERENT’, over one hundred local charities, community groups, small businesses, essential blue light services and LGBTQ+ figureheads such as Dame Kelly Holmes and Suzy Eddie Izzard graced the streets of Brighton and Hove for the annual Brighton & Hove Pride LGBTQ+ Community Parade. Refusing to let Storm Antoni’s wind and rain dampen the parade, community spirit was at an all-time high as participants and the public marched from Hove Lawns to Preston Park on Saturday morning.
Saturday at FABULOSO
At Preston Park, Brighton & Hove Pride’s two day community fundraising event FABULOSO saw thousands of people attend on Saturday. They saw the incredible Black Eyed Peas take the main stage for a set full of hits including ‘Pump It’, ‘Boom Boom Pow’, ‘Where Is The Love’ and ‘I Gotta Feeling’ where the audience lent a few helping hands – and voices – to sing out the set.
Earlier in the day saw standout sets from Bellah Mae, The Blackmordia, Mae Muller who strutted out on the catwalk in the pouring rain. Plus, Jax Jones, Confidence Man, Dylan and pop sensation Zara Larsson. Across the park, attendees enjoyed a fiesta of diverse LGBTQ+ artists and immersive experiences. The party continued across Legends Cabaret Big Top, Queer Town and The Cocoa Butter Club. Attendees were also treated to performances from the likes of Honey Dijon, Monki, Patrick Wolf, Gok Wan, DJ Paulette, Lynks and more.
Sunday at FABULOSO
The sun came out in full force on Sunday, with a day of back-to-back 90s and 00s nostalgia. It was STEPS’ only UK performance this year, bringing their signature dance moves and throwback tunes galore. The set included ‘Tragedy’, ‘5,6,7,8’, ‘Chain Reaction’, ‘Summer of Love’ and so much more. The day also brought the energy with performances from Tom Aspaul, Harleymoon Kemp, a denim clad B*Witched, The Vivienne, Louise and the one and only global icon Melanie C.
Pride Village Party
Over in Kemp Town, the Pride Village Party saw local businesses in St. James’s Street and Marine Parade bring the party for an unforgettable weekend to raise extra funds for the Brighton Rainbow Fund and the Pride Social Impact Fund.
Managing Director Paul Kemp comments:
“Following a challenging year for Brighton & Hove Pride, we were incredibly proud to see the LGBTQ+ community, our allies and the amazing people of Brighton & Hove come out in force to celebrate and enjoy a safe and happy Pride.
“Sadly, initial figures show, due to the well publicised transport disruptions and last minute extreme weather forecasts, attendance across our events was down by 50%.
“Whilst feeling incredibly grateful to the support of our city and multi agency partners that help make the event happen, there is no denying the impact of not having rail transport into our city, especially when the weather deteriorated. We’ll certainly have to work hard to overcome the significant challenges in delivering Pride 2024.”
Firmly established as the UK’s most popular international Pride festival, Brighton & Hove Pride is as famous, vibrant, popular and unique as the city itself. Brighton & Hove Pride’s sole ethos is to promote diversity, inclusion and education within our communities while raising much needed funds for our local LGBTQ+ charity and community groups and projects through the Brighton Rainbow Fund and Social Impact Fund.