It’s Monday, and I’m currently lying in bed trying to catch up with sleep after an incredible weekend. Birmingham Pride 2017 is always the event of the year for me; surrounded by friends, living it up, being 100 percent myself, watching artists & DJs perform, and having lots of fun; what more could I want? This year was a bit different though; the attack in Manchester, at the Ariana Grande concert, on Monday (22 May), certainly made an impact on the world; causing some events not to go ahead, but Birmingham Pride 2017 continued with added precautions to keep it safe.
— Jonathan Currinn (@CriticJonni) May 26, 2017
Arriving on Friday in the middle of town in the glorious sunshine certainly made me excited for the weekend to begin. There was a total sense of security as armed police could be seen everywhere we went. We totally knew we were safe and secure.
Unfortunately, the weather didn’t hold up and as Saturday morning arrived with rain and clouds, it was obvious that I wasn’t going to get my tan on this weekend. The parade was fun, as per usual; police were everywhere, but we were having so much fun we didn’t even notice.
After the parade, we headed to Hurst Street, where Birmingham Pride takes place; we went through security, as usual, where you have to empty your pockets, and they pat you down. They do this every year and was the main reason I wasn’t worried at all for Pride because I knew how safe and secure it was.
Sunday was much the same, we even managed to get a photo with the armed police. All the officers were getting involved in the festivities, which was adorable to see; they certainly helped to bring a sense of calmness to everyone.
Nothing went wrong, nothing bad happened, I didn’t fall over – which makes a change. The weekend will forever remain my highlight of 2017, just like it did the previous years in 2016 and 2015. I managed to see all the acts that I wanted and I am completely bruised from the funfair rides – totally the Tagada fault, they ought to put padded seating on that ride.
Now just another year to wait until the next Birmingham Pride, and I seriously cannot wait. The people who decided not to go because they were afraid after the Manchester attack, clearly missed out on one of the best weekends of their lives; not only did they lose the money they spent on the pre-paid tickets, but they also missed out on the chance to celebrate 50 years of decriminalisation of homosexuality, and the chance to fully be themselves and be proud of who they are.