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7 Smaller Pride Events in the UK You Might Not Know About

Ever since the UK celebrated its first Pride in London in 1972, more and more Pride events have been established and held annually up and down the country. While bigger celebrations like London, Brighton and Manchester Pride attract thousands of people looking to celebrate and continue fighting for queer equality, there are also a number of smaller events you can go to - including plenty that many don’t know about.

Attending a smaller Pride Event isn’t just a great option if you don’t like crowds - or don’t believe you should have to pay to celebrate being queer, I’m with you on this - but it also gives you a chance to interact with local LGBTQ+ businesses who aren’t heading to the larger events. These smaller celebrations also allow you to spread queer love in every nook and cranny of the UK, including in tinier towns that usually don’t have much LGBTQ+ representation.

Below, we’ve collated a list of some of the smaller celebrations where you can celebrate Pride 2024 , whether you’re a member of the queer community or a fierce LGBTQ+ ally.

Ilkley Pride

Saturday 29th June 

While you might be familiar with Ilkley Moor, did you know this small spa town in Bradford also has an annual Pride celebration? The first Ilkley Pride took place just two years ago in 2022 and has since been going from strength to strength. This year’s event promises to be bigger and better than ever, with their 2024 celebration focusing on community projects like mental health support, hate crime prevention and youth support around LGBT+ issues. So, if you do fancy releasing your inner Bronte and exploring the moorlands, you can also pop into Pride, too.

The Pink Picnic

Saturday 22nd June 

Being neighbours to Manchester’s infamous Pride celebrations isn’t a position many would want to find themselves in. However, Salford Pride decided to use this to their advantage by creating something totally new: The Pink Picnic . First established in 2011 and drawing a crowd of just 120 people, the event quickly expanded with queer acts added to the lineup. In 2020, keen picnic-goers even joined an 8-hour digital party due to COVID-19 and the 2023 celebration saw an increase of 1,000 people wanting to attend from 2022. This has led to the Pink Picnic becoming Greater Manchester's largest grassroots pride event ever!

Porty Pride

Friday 28th - Sunday 30th June 

For the local community of Portobello in Edinburgh, the cancelled Pride marches in the city during the Covid-19 lockdown led to them instead celebrating Pride Month by flying Progress flags along Portobello High Street. So much was this a success, that the first ever Porty Pride was held in June 2022. The National Lottery Community Fund Scotland has since given the event a seed fund so the community can continue holding their annual celebrations and show Edinburgh that queer joy is celebrated in all corners of the city.

Ulverston Pride

Saturday 20th July 

For many smaller Pride events on this list, these annual marches and parties are still relatively new. However, the celebrations haven't yet begun for Ulverston, a small market town in Cumbria… After raising money through LGBTQ+ fundraisers like drag bingo, Ulverston announced its first ever Pride Festival would take place this year in 2024. With performers and artists, markets and local traders, and even face painting, we can’t wait for this event to become a regular celebration in this market town.

You can continue to donate to Ulverston Pride’s Go Fund Me page to support their first ever Pride celebration.

Bude Pride

Saturday 27th July 

Pride events aren’t just confined to cities and towns - you can also find them on the coast! Bude Pride has become a firm favourite for the LGBTQ+ community in Cornwall, namely for their spectacular Pride march that goes through the centre of this seaside town and sees volunteers carrying the world’s largest Pride flag. After the march, attendees can enjoy an evening celebration with live music and entertainment, and even Cornwall’s very own Pride shop.

Pride Comic Art Festival

Saturday 21st September 

Pride comes in all forms - something which we think makes this annual event stand out compared to the country’s other celebrations! Bristol’s Pride Comic Art Festival is a great example of this. First established in 2021 amidst the restrictions and confusion of the Covid-19 pandemic, the day was immediately met with roaring success. Today, Pride Comic Art Festival (or PrideCAF for short) celebrates independent LGBTQIA+ comic artists, comic writers, illustrators and zine creators all under one fabulous roof. 

Preston Pride

Saturday 28 September 

Surrounded by 82 villages and 27 towns, Preston Pride provides a place for queer individuals and LGBTQ+ allies in Lancashire to come together and celebrate queer joy. Each year, the town’s infamous Flag Market is filled with live music, guest appearances and lots of unforgettable northern charm. As a 100% volunteer-led event, Preston Pride is a great way to celebrate all things queer in the North of England without feeling like its being monetised.

Where are you celebrating Pride this year?

We would love to find out just where you plan on spreading queer joy in 2024. Get in touch and let us know on the Rainbow & Co Instagram page or follow us on Facebook .

To discover more Pride events near you, check out our LGBTQIA+ UK Pride Events Calendar 2024 . If there’s a rainbow next to your event, we’ll see you there!

Tilly Brogan

Tilly is a queer Freelance Copywriter based in Manchester. She balances her time between working with LGBTQ+ organisations and women’s rights charities - and people watching in various Manchester cafes. She is also a proud lesbian. You can read more of her work  here .

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