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Surrey Pride 2019: Celebrate, Educate & Connect by Michal Frackowiak

“It’s time to put Surrey on the map as a county that welcomes all, so our people don’t have to travel out to feel like they can be themselves.”

- Stephen Ireland, founder of Pride in Surrey

As an attendee of this year’s Brighton and London Pride I can honestly say that these events are becoming so much more than mere summer entertainment; they are an absolute necessity. We are living in a strange time, so we need more love and joy to spread all around us, and there is nothing as liberating as a Pride parade. And yes, I’m talking to you, straight people, as well!

I am incredibly excited to announce that the county of Surrey is getting its first large Pride event next year!

What, where, and when?

Pride in Surrey will take place on Saturday, 10th August 2019 in Woking, which is just a 10-minute journey on the train from Guildford. While the event may still feel like ages away, the time will pass before you know it, and you’ll be walking in the parade instead of revising for your resit assessments and deferrals. Although, I hope that’s not going to happen because we want you celebrating the closure of the academic year, not only with gays, but also in a gay mood, which will only be elevated by the relief that you passed all your modules (if you fail you’re still invited, we’re a supportive bunch!).

The 2019 event will mark the 50th anniversary of Stonewall and will be completely FREE to all the participants (unlike bigger festivals, e.g. Brighton and London, where you have to purchase a wristband in order to enter the parade). Stephen Ireland, the founder of Pride in Surrey claims he’s “thrilled to be working with such a supportive council and the CEO of Outline Surrey to not only create and amazing event but also raise awareness of the available support to those within the community.”

The event has received an enormous support from the Mayor of Woking, Councillor Will Foster, who promised that “the team will create a parade second to none that will bring together all communities within Surrey and beyond.” I’m pretty sure we can count on the professionalism of Mr Ireland, who’s got broad experience in organising Pride events around the UK. As SurreyLive additionally confirmed, during the day there’s going to be live music, entertainment and various artists performing on stage, something for everybody to enjoy. Mr Ireland is also working with different organisations to make sure that the event is as inclusive as possible, with facilities for people with visual and hearing impairments, and learning disabilities.

How can you donate, sponsor or volunteer?

There are multiple ways you can contribute to the organisation and promotion of Pride in Surrey. You can start by visiting www.prideinsurrey.org and getting in touch with the Trustee Charlie Watts via e-mail: charlie@prideinsurrey.org. Don’t forget to enquire about details at the LGBT+ Society at University of Surrey and stay in touch at the social media:

Twitter: @PrideinSurrey | Facebook: @PrideinSurrey | Instagram: @PrideinSurrey

We can’t wait to see you there!

Credits:

Created with images by Peter Hershey - "Proud rainbow flag"

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