London Pride cancelled for a second year
‘No parade, no protest, means no Pride’
London’s Pride parade has been cancelled for a second year due to Covid restrictions.
The event, due to take place on 11 September, has been cancelled due to challenges navigating the “government’s recently updated Covid-19 guidelines and legislation for large-scale public events.”
This follows the 2020 Pride parade being postponed in March 2020 and later cancelled, with celebrations moving online, due to the pandemic.
According to Christopher Joell-Deshields, Executive director of Pride in London’s team, when working through final risk assessments it became clear that London Pride “could not provide the level of mitigation expected from the local public health team and the government”.
If the event were to go ahead, it would mean “losing the crucial parade and reducing the event to just two or three stages scattered across central London, with limited tickets.” According to Joell-Deshields, ticketing the event “goes against everything we want Pride in London to be.
“No parade, no protest, means no Pride. We cannot waver from that commitment to you, our community. How are we meant to tell some people that they have tickets, and others they don’t?”
While the 2021 Pride event may not be going ahead, Pride in London volunteers will continue to work to reinforce engagement with LGBT+ communities to push for “diversity inclusion and the elevation of issues that matter to us all”.
Joell-Deshields went on to thank “the volunteers, organisations and agencies who have been working hard for the past 15 months…
“You have my deepest respect, and our community’s love. Please support queer venues, spaces, artists and performance this September.”
In response to the cancellation Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London, made the statement that: “it is a real shame that for the second year in a row we will not be able to join together on the streets of London for Pride.
“But although our city continues to open up, we must still be cautious about the spread of Covid-19 and it is understandable why the Pride in London committee have made this decision.
“I truly hope that next year we will be able to unite on our streets once again in solidarity and celebration.”
Following the cancellation of this year’s Pride parade, Joell-Deshields and the rest of the Pride in London team are calling for the UK government to “declare 2022 as a year of queer”, as next year’s Pride event will commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first Pride in the UK.