Wakefield Pride: Thousands expected to descend on the city this weekend to celebrate LGBT

Wakefield Pride
Wakefield Pride

A festival that started life scribbled down on the back of a beer mat in a city centre pub is expected to attract thousands of people this weekend.

Pride Wakefield, which celebrates the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender) community, will mark its 14th annual event this Sunday with organisers expecting bumper crowds to join in with the celebrations.

The Mayor of Wakefield Councillor June Cliffe MBE joins in the party atmosphere at The New Union at Wakefield Pride.'From left, Alan Little, licencee, Miss Shurlay, entertainer, David Rollinson, manager, The Mayor Cllr June Cliffe, Jason James, a  customer.

The Mayor of Wakefield Councillor June Cliffe MBE joins in the party atmosphere at The New Union at Wakefield Pride.'From left, Alan Little, licencee, Miss Shurlay, entertainer, David Rollinson, manager, The Mayor Cllr June Cliffe, Jason James, a customer.

There will be parade through the city on Sunday, before a festival party on Lower Warrengate outside The Rainbow pub with live music and entertainment.

Organiser Jo King said: “When Pride Wakefield started at The Rainbow pub it was written on the back of a beer mat.

“It was me with my DJ equipment in the car park outside The Rainbow, and since then it has evolved bringing together some of the best local and international acts to celebrate equality.

“We never knew that it would be 5,000 people strong compared to just a few hundred 14 years ago.”

The event has attracted an increasing number of sponsors over the years, including the charity, Bens Music Foundation.

Lee Manning, CEO and co-founder of the charity said: “In the last four years we have been involved with Pride Wakefield we have seen it grow, mature and build massively.

“We never knew it would grow so big so quickly, and we can only see it getting bigger in our city.”

Starting at 11am on Sunday, August 11, there will be a stage at Bens Music Foundation on Trinity Walk as the parade gears up to start at noon.

There will be a rolling road closure from noon until 1pm as the parade moves through the city including Wood Street, The Bullring and down to Lower Warrengate and Sun Lane.

From 1pm til 10pm there will be live acts and music, while an after-show party will be held at Brickworks on Westgate from 10pm.