The ‘Gay Pride’ movement is not one that myself or Michael have ever been actively involved in. None of our children were involved in the Pride movement, and they never made any gay friends whilst they were at school, however this was the 1980s and a very different time indeed. Spending this time recently in the UK has allowed us to develop an appreciation for the finer details of British culture, which we had not had the opportunity to notice before.
‘Pride‘, the annual global event celebrating a full spectrum of sexualities and genders is something that we’d never had the chance to experience, so in the name of adventure we set out on the road to Liverpool, to find our ‘Pride’.
Although Pride celebrations occur all over the country, we chose Liverpool as our destination to hit ‘two birds with one stone’, so to speak. We’d yet to visit this hub of creativity and working class culture, and felt that this was the perfect opportunity to explore the city and immerse ourselves in an aspect of British culture that, until recently, had been completely unknown to us.
A City Break Like No Other
Michael and I have always been more partial to a rural break, as opposed to a city break, however our stay in Liverpool proved that the former can be equally affordable and relaxing, despite our initial misgivings. We chose to stay in an apartment on the edge of Sefton Park, a wide expanse of mixed-use park land that was worth the trip alone. Positioned just two miles outside of the city centre, it was easy for us to get and to from the motorway and left us tantalisingly close to the heart of the city.
Pride Finds Us!
We arrived on the day of Pride, so there was little time to settle in. After quickly unpacking, we jumped on a bus into town and moved towards the centre of the festivities. The closer that we drifted towards the thumping music the more we noticed people dressed in brightly coloured clothes. Many wore rainbow flags over their shoulders and some had even dyed their hair. Dressed in our usual blue and black waterproofs, Michael and I felt a little out of place, but were soon swept along with the joy of the event.
Both of us had initially conceived of simply spectating the action from a distance and therefore lending our support in a passive fashion, however we soon discovered that this was an event that actively demanded our participation – there was no avoiding it! We arrived early for the parade, unsure of where to stand until we realised that we were not going to be spectating the event – we were going to be a part of it.
Full steam ahead…
Hand in hand, we moved forward with an entire army of colourfully dressed characters who cheered and whooped with as much enthusiasm as you’d see at a soccer game. The parade took us through Liverpool’s historic centre, taking us past many of the sights that we’d planned on visiting the following day. The sight of so many jubilant people marching past these austere buildings is one that neither of us are likely to forget for some time.