The organisers of Manchester Pride has announced significant changes to this year’s festival in response to criticism last year that its grant-giving did not cover some of the key causes of the region’s LGBTQ+ communities.

The announcement follows a six month review and will see Manchester Pride’s August celebrations continue, while the Charity will refocus its efforts back onto its activist roots .

As a result, Pride celebrations will be focused around the Gay Village Party and MCR Pride Live will not go ahead in 2022 after being identified as less important by the communities in furthering their aims

The Parade, The Candlelit Vigil, the Gay Village Party, Superbia Weekend, Youth Pride MCR, Family Pride MCR and Human Rights Forum will proceed – identified by the community as vital elements of Manchester Pride and a fixed amount or percentage of each ticket purchased to Pride events, directly to the community fund.

The Board of Trustees will be more visible and connected with communities, and commit to ensuring greater transparency on the charity’s actions.

Paul Wheeler, Chair of Manchester Pride’s board of Trustees, said:

“I’d like to say a big thank you to the thousands of individuals who had their say on the future direction of the Charity.Manchester Pride should be something everyone feels proud of and can see a little bit of themselves reflected back in.

“We acknowledge we got some things wrong last year and we’re sorry for the upset and frustration this caused. It is important that Manchester Pride reflects what Manchester’s LGBTQ+ communities tell us they want and this review has shown how we can do better.

“The communities have been clear in saying their must-have elements over the weekend specifically include The Parade, The Candlelit Vigil and the Gay Village Party, whereas MCR Pride Live was seen as less important to furthering our cause.

“First and foremost, we’re a campaigning charity fighting for equality and opportunities for LGBTQ+ individuals across Greater Manchester, and the response from across our communities corroborates that position. We want more input into the charity’s operation, with a greater focus on campaigning, lobbying and education, whilst seeing fewer celebrity headline acts at MCR Pride Live.

“That’s why we’re going back to our roots, our Pride celebration is about protest. As a result, we’ve listened to the communities’ comments, and will address their recommendations to refocus efforts back towards activism.”

“Furthermore, we will commit a fixed amount or percentage of each ticket purchase to Pride events directly to the community fund and provide clarity on where the remainder of the amounts generated from ticket sales is attributed.

The Charity says further details will be revealed on the Manchester Pride line up in the coming months.

Tim Sigsworth MBE is Chief Executive at akt, an LGBTQ+ youth homelessness charity working with young people aged 16 – 25. He said: “Pride must always be a space to celebrate our wonderful and diverse community, to shout loudly as activists and provide a welcome for the next generation of LGBTQ+ youth. At a time when we are being challenged and driven apart by haters, akt welcomes this report from Manchester Pride – which promises a platform for engagement, unity, activism and community back at the heart of Pride.”

Paul continued: “The organisation has sought to address big questions and concerns, such as the role of Pride as a protest movement as opposed to a pop concert, how Pride can be more accessible, inclusive and safer, and how we go about giving grants.

“We’ve also tried to address how we can be more transparent and connected as an organisation to Greater Manchester’s LGBTQ+ communities, surrounding the themes of communities, activism, giving and transparency.

“Ensuring the charity now reflects the needs of our communities is now our focus. We don’t see this review as the end of the conversation, rather it’s the start.  This report marks the beginning of more co-creation, more transparency and more listening.”


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