News: Pride London apologises for scaled-down event

The organisers of Pride London have apologised publicly for changes to tomorrow’s event, which will see all vehicles banned from the parade, no official outdoor events in Soho and an earlier finish.

Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to go to central London tomorrow for the gay pride celebration, which is one of the biggest in the world.

The usual parade has been scaled back to a ‘procession’ on foot, with no floats or vehicles allowed, and will start at 11am rather than the originally planned time of 1pm.

All live music and outdoor parties in Soho have been cancelled, and events in Trafalgar Square will finish at the earlier time of 6pm.

The World Pride team has blamed a ‘funding shortfall’ for the changes.

On their website, they said: “We offer our sincerest apologies to the community, our sponsors and partners for the position we have found ourselves in.

“We understand the confusion and chaos this must have caused for many people.”

In a comment piece in the Pink Paper today, gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell claimed the event could have been rescued by London Mayor Boris Johnson, if he had chosen to do so.

Tatchell added: “This month is the 40th anniversary of the first ever Pride parade. Veterans from 1972 will lead Saturday’s London march.

“This major anniversary makes the shambles of Saturday’s Pride parade, rally and parties all the more appalling.”

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