Reading Pride was formed in 2003 by a group of committed
members of the local LGBT community with the aim of holding and annual Pride
celebration in Reading.
Sat 4th Sept 2004 sees the first Reading Pride Festival take place in Kings Meadow Park including a packed line-up on the main stage and live appearance from Graham Norton.
The first Reading Pride parade was held in 2006, jointly organised by The Wynford Arms where the staff and customers made a huge Rainbow Flag to carry from pub to King's Meadow which became a tradition through years.
In 2009 The Parade moved to start at Reading Civic Centre, bringing the spirit of Pride through the heart of Reading and growing in numbers year on year.
Reading Pride also introduced an award ceremony to thank the people that have made a difference to LGBT people in Reading and the Thames Valley. The winners were -
John Woods – Lifetime Achievement Award
Dennis Hambridge – LGBT Campaigner Award
SohoBoyz – LGBT Charity/Business Award
Chris Gibbons / Stonewall – LGBT Impact Campaigner Award
Simon Hallam & Sue Green – Community Campaigner Award
In 2001 Lorna McArdle steped down as Chair after many years to form SupportU along with several other Committee members, she is replaced as Chair by Laurence O’Meara. James McDonald serves as CEO of the Committee .
In 2012 Lorna McArdle and
Andrew Stonehill-Brooks appear on stage with replicas of the Olympic torch they
2013 sees reading pride celebrate 10 years
In 2014 Andrew Adams becomes Chair and acting CEO of the Committee.
In 2015 #prideinyou launched as theme and ongoing strapline for Reading Pride. New website and logo launched.
The Pride Parade moved to commence at Reading Station following the completion of the station re-building; the Festival sees well known 90s group N-Trance on stage. The first official Pride After-Party is held due to the reduction in LGBT venues.
Alex Walker is appointed CEO of the Committee.
Founding member & Trustee Selwyn Jones passed away prompting a huge response from the local community.
Thanks to Andy adams from reading pride for his help with this post.