Brighton Pride 2012 will go ahead thanks to new company

A newly-formed community interest company will run the Brighton Pride festival this year, after financial issues threatened the future of the event.

New group wins bid to organise Brighton Pride 2012
New group wins bid to organise Brighton Pride 2012

Pride Brighton and Hove's proposal was chosen by the council on Tuesday (6 March) over a bid from the previous organiser, Pride South East.

The community interest company promises to "return the event to its roots" by donating all profits to LGBT and HIV groups. The festival is one of the UK’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) events.

As Event reported last week, Pride Brighton and Hove was set up by Paul Kemp of Aeon Events, leisure investment firm Stagfleet and James Ledward, editor of Gscene Magazine to save the festival after Pride South East experienced financial problems. The new organisers say that although Brighton Pride claimed to benefit LGBT causes, local charities "hadn’t received a penny" from the event for three years.

James Ledward, editor of Gscene magazine, said: "This is a win-win result for the LGBT voluntary sector and HIV organisations. Never again will the efforts of volunteers in the voluntary sector be compromised as they have been in the last three years. The more people who buy a ticket for [the Pride ticketed events in] Preston Park, the more money will be guaranteed to our groups and organisations."

Michael Deol of Stagfleet said: "We see the continuation of the city’s LGBT festival as integral to Brighton’s economy. The annual event has ensured a fantastic summer boom for businesses across the city from guest houses and hotels to restaurants, shops and clubs. It is with this in mind, and our belief in the great importance of Brighton’s fantastic LGBT services, that Pride Brighton and Hove are proud to reinstate Pride in 2012."

The new organisers will ringfence £1 from each ticket sale to fund local charities through a grants programme from The Rainbow Fund.

Paul Elgood, chair of the Rainbow Fund said: "This returns Pride to its original roots, as an income source for local LGBT and HIV community groups."

Pride 2012 will take place on 1 September and will include a parade through central Brighton, followed by a ticketed event in Preston Park.

Pride South East declined to comment further.

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