Pride set to paint Sunderland pink

The Pride Parade in Fawcett Street.'Sunderland Pride March 2013
The Pride Parade in Fawcett Street.'Sunderland Pride March 2013
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SUNDERLAND’S streets will become a rainbow of colour in the city’s annual Pride festival.

Each year, thousands parade through the city centre in a celebration of Wearside’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

Sunday’s event, the fourth of its kind, will begin from noon with a march from the Civic Centre entrance in Burdon Road, along Fawcett Street and High Street West before culminating in a street party at Park Lane from 1pm to 6pm.

Dance duo Booty Luv, who had a hit with Boogie 2Nite, will be taking to the stage in Park Lane as well as Eurovision singer Nicki French and a number of local acts.

The event, which is expected to attract about 4,000 people, is free to attend and everyone is invited to go along and join in the fun.

Ryan Houston, chairman of Sunderland Pride, said: “As the years have gone on, a lot of straight people have come along and joined the procession.

“It’s more of a celebration of diversity, rather than just gay pride. We’re expecting about 4,000 people this year and it’s later in September so we’re hoping students will come along too.”

He added: “The plans have gone really well this year. The university is sponsoring us and we have a lot of new funders, which is a great help and shows the organisation is going in the right direction.”

Because of the procession, a rolling road closure, with each road taking approximately 20 minutes to be cleared, will be in place on the following roads: Burdon Road between the Civic Centre and Park Road, Burdon Road, Toward Road, Borough Road, Fawcett Street, High Street West, Low Row, Green Terrace, Albion Place, Stockton Road and Derwent Street.

The event in Park Lane Village runs from 1pm to 6pm, however, road closures will be from 6am to 9pm.

This is required for setting up of the event. The closed roads are: Derwent Street, Park Lane, Olive Street, Back Lane between Vine Place and Derwent Street, Back Lane between Derwent Street and Olive Street and Olive Street South Back.