Thousands attend Herts Pride in Watford

Thousands attend Herts Pride in Watford

Thousands attend Herts Pride in Watford

First published in News Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

Members of Hertfordshire’s LGBT community, along with their friends and families, were out in force for this years’ Herts Pride in Watford.

Stages, a cabaret tent and market zones were all set up in Cassiobury Park on Saturday, August 30, as about 3,000 people turned up to enjoy the festivities. 

More than 20 acts appeared on a number of stages during the event, which is now in its second year.

See our gallery of images here

Elly Barnes, CEO and founder of the "educate and celebrate" initiative, opened the event under the theme "We Are Family".

Tyson Martin, Herts Pride organiser and chairman of Hertfordshire Pride Society said: "I personally think it went really, really well, we had positive feedback from lots of people.

"For our second year, it was a really good event...the atmosphere was relaxed, chilled and fun.

"Our theme for Herts Pride, We are Family, resonated positively with everyone that attended. It was a celebration of diverse families, same sex marriage, civil partnerships, relationships and friendships.

"Herts Pride was proud to have Elly Barnes open our event. We believe that it is important that our lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans and straight all feel empowered to find their places in the world, in their families, and in their communities.

"For us, it is more than just an LGBT event, it is a community event."

The main event was free, but a range of wristbands were available if people wanted to access the cabaret marquee or licensed bar areas.

The cabaret marquee cost £5 if tickets were purchased online in advance, or £10 on the day. Access All Area tickets cost £20. 

Ms Barnes said: "I was very excited to officially open Herts Pride by cutting the fabulous rainbow cake - it was a great honour.

"The whole event was fantastic and I was really proud to be a part of it. LGBT Pride events such as Herts Pride continue to be an opportunity to celebrate but also to educate about how we can create a prejudice-free society." 

Mr Martin also confirmed that discussions about plans for next year’s event will be taking place at Hertfordshire Pride Society’s annual meeting next month.  

Herts Aid and Watford Sexual Health Clinic, based in the Wellbeing marquee, were at the event and were offering sexual health tests.

Sally Sharpe, press officer at Herts Aid said: "We had a successful day, offering free confidential tests for HIV, chlamydia and gonorrhoea. 

"The team, based in the wellbeing marquee, tested 65 people for HIV and manned a stand raising awareness of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections." 

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