After a week long programme of events for pride week it was time for the grand finale, the pride day itself. And what a day it was, basked in glorious sunshine and with a jam packed day of entertainment ahead it promised to be the best Bristol pride to date.
During the morning, thousands gathered in Queen Square with banners, whistles and colourful outfits. I felt particularly sorry for both the Nando’s chicken and the Co-op bee who decided to to the march in sweltering outfits. Now that’s dedication for you! Led by Bristol Samba the parade made it’s way out of the square and along Baldwin Street where crowds had lined the route to cheer and take photos. The Queenshilling gave a nod to Bristol’s maritime roots with it’s speedboat packed with speakers which played music along the march and got everybody into the party spirit. After arriving at Castle Park the crowds dispersed and made their way into the festival site.
As we walked around the site it was clear that there was something for everyone with dedicated community and family areas, plenty to eat and drink and multiple stages for the entertainment and a huge funfair. Something that was prevalent throughout the festival site was the smiles that adorned everyone’s faces. A mixture of carnival atmosphere and uninterrupted sunshine was going to guarantee a good day out.
The main stage played host to a packed schedule of artists and highlights included X Factor contestant, Ruth Lorenzo and singer, songwriter & DJ, Ronika.
This year’s main stage headliners were boyband Blue and Sophie Ellis-Bextor both of whom were an excellent choice and both delivered stellar performances. It was Sophie Ellis-Bextor who closed the festival and did so with style. Everybody was on their feet dancing and singing along until the very end.
The O2 Academy hosted the after party this year and there were plenty of options for those with the energy to continue the festivities.
None of the events would have been possible if it hadn’t been for festival director Daryn J Carter and his team of dedicated volunteers who work tirelessly all year long so that we have such an incredible free festival. We really can’t thank them enough for all that they do, they are a credit to our wonderful city. We can’t wait to see what’s in store for 2014!
Bristol pride lots of fun. Crowd so adorable I could’ve hugged them all.
— Sophie Ellis-Bextor (@SophieEB) July 14, 2013
— Bristol Lord Mayor (@brislordmayor) July 13, 2013
— ss Great Britain (@ssGreatBritain) July 12, 2013
Bristol Pride 2013 in Pictures
Click to enlarge