Sheffield’s Pride festival is on the move - but parade is kept on hold

Joel, Vermilda and Genesia
Joel, Vermilda and Genesia
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Sheffield’s gay community will host its annual Pride festival on Saturday - this year in a new location with no parade.

The event has switched from its usual venue at Devonshire Green to the Sheffield University Students’ Union, a move organisers say is down to rising safety costs.

Adam Hood, chair of Sheffield Pride, said: “We simply can’t afford the costs of staging the event safely in the city centre, building stages, paying for acts to appear and all the infrastructure.

“However, The Student’s Union has helped us meaning that we still have a large outdoor event, with a courtyard party, outdoor stages in the gardens, cabaret, drag queens and everything you’d expect at a Pride event - and if it rains, there is loads of space inside so the event goes ahead.”

Celebrations start at 1pm, featuring stalls, sideshows, an entertainment stage and a sing-along screening of Disney film Frozen.

Entry is free to the family area, while admission to the rest of the event is £3 for adults and free for under 10s.

Last year 5,000 people attended the festival and the mass walk from Tudor Square to Devonshire Green was the biggest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender parade ever held in South Yorkshire.

However, Adam said plans for a parade this year have been dropped because of the risk posed by an English Defence League protest due to take place in the city centre.

Two new events will be held in the evening - a candlelit vigil at 8pm to remember those affected by HIV, and a cabaret night from 9pm.

Sheffield Pride started in 2009 and was initially held in Endcliffe Park.

A separate event - Pinknic - drew hundreds to the Peace Gardens last weekend.