North East prepares to show its Pride for 10th year

An estimated 12,000 people took part in the Newcastle Pride parade last year.
An estimated 12,000 people took part in the Newcastle Pride parade last year.
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A host of free entertainment, including performances by A1, Sam Bailey and Stooshe, will mark 10 years of pride in the North East this weekend.

Newcastle Pride, sponsored by business improvement district company NE1, is now one of the biggest free LGBT festivals in the UK.

Sam Bailey, who won The X Factor in 2013, will headline the entertainment at Newcastle Pride on Sunday.

Sam Bailey, who won The X Factor in 2013, will headline the entertainment at Newcastle Pride on Sunday.

The popular event, which features three days of live music and activities celebrating Pride worldwide, will return to the city from tomorrow until Sunday.

It includes a parade from the Civic Centre to the Town Moor at noon on Saturday, celebrating this year’s theme: Pride in our past, present and future.

That will be followed by performances at the Town Moor by a host of stars, including Tell It To My Heart singer Kelly Llorenna and songstress Angie Brown.

The live stages will be headlined by chart-toppers A1 and Sam Bailey, who won The X Factor in 2013, on Saturday and Sunday respectively.

The Newcastle Pride parade makes its way down Northumberland Street last year.

The Newcastle Pride parade makes its way down Northumberland Street last year.

There will also be a host of activities and themed entertainment zones throughout the weekend, including the Eazy Street Cabaret Tent, the Powerhouse Dance Tent, the Tesco Bank Family Zone and the Steve Paske Heath Zone, sponsored by Arnold Clarke and Northumbria Water, which will run alongside a funfair and market stalls in the Matfen Hall Rainbow Village.

A variety of refreshment areas will also be available across the site, manned by experts at Ramside Catering.

Newcastle Pride will end this year with the Co-operative Funeralcare candlelit vigil at the Civic Centre on Sunday, offering visitors a chance to reflect on the fight for equality and the ongoing LGBT struggle for some worldwide.

Mark Nichols, chairman of Northern Pride, which organises the annual event, said: “Newcastle Pride 2017 holds a particular significance, as it marks 10 years of the festival being held in the city.

“We hope that record numbers from across the North East and wider UK will come together to mark this momentous occasion and to enjoy three days of live music and entertainment completely free of charge.”

The event itself is free to attend, however a number of Virgin Money Gold Circle and VIP tickets are available for those who want to guarantee prime viewing spots for the performances on Saturday and Sunday.

The Parade runs from the Civic Centre at noon on Saturday, with all participants being asked to arrive by 11.30am.

Entertainment runs at the Town Moor from 12pm to 7.20pm on Saturday and from 1pm until 8.20pm on Sunday, with the candlelit vigil being held back at the Civic Centre at 9pm.