Fundraiser launched for biggest ever Pride event in Aylesbury

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After Covid restrictions have halted plans for the past two summers, organisers are planning the biggest event Aylesbury has ever seen

A fundraiser has been launched to support costs for the biggest Pride event in the history of Aylesbury.

Organisers are canvassing local businesses to sponsor a Pride in Aylesbury event, this summer and are hoping for public support funding the spectacle.

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Discussions are ongoing about hosting a Pride event on the summer Bank Holiday Weekend on August 29 at Vale Park.

The Pride stall at Parklife 2021The Pride stall at Parklife 2021
The Pride stall at Parklife 2021

Event planners say productive meetings have been held with Aylesbury Town Council members who are helping to make the event a possibility.

Following Parklife 2022, the major free festival in Aylesbury which is pencilled in for the two days prior, Pride in Aylesbury would be held on the Bank Holiday Monday.

It is hoped that some of the infrastructure and staging that makes Parklife possible in Vale Park each year can be used for a third festival day.

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Organisers want live music, stalls and local business support on the Monday, in an event celebrating Aylesbury's LGBT community.

Pride in the Park 2022Pride in the Park 2022
Pride in the Park 2022

Previous LGBT events have been held at Discover Bucks Museum and have attracted close to 100 people.

But nothing has been organised in Aylesbury on the potential scale of an event at Vale Park.

Parklife can attract over 10,000 people at its height, Aylesbury Town Council estimates that 19,000 people visited last year's free festival over the two days.

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Also Covid restrictions mean there hasn't been a Pride celebration of any form in Aylesbury since 2019.

Another photo from Parklife 2021Another photo from Parklife 2021
Another photo from Parklife 2021

Last year, organisers chose to wait, rather than make plans at the start of 2021, when there was still a lot of uncertainty around when the country would reopen.

Aylesbury's LGBT community was represented at the two-day Parklife event.

Members set up a stall, Pride in Aylesbury organisers credit conversations had at the free festival with providing a lot of the ideas, that will be brought to this year's extravaganza.

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A spokesperson from the Pride in Aylesbury group said: "Pride in Aylesbury & Aylesbury Vale LGBT Social Group [are going] to be working closely with Aylesbury Town Council to proudly present Pride In The Park 2022.

"Our plans will be [sent] no later than January 29 to be discussed on February 8 by the communities committee, for the event to take place on Bank Holiday Monday August 29 in Vale Park."

The fundraiser which can be accessed online here, has been set up to help with the costs of supporting the event at a major venue.

Money raised will also go towards posters and t-shirts supporting the event, and fees for potential live acts performing on the day.

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Pride in Aylesbury CEO, Matthew Fuller told the Bucks Herald: "We're still in the proposal stages nothing is guaranteed, but we've started crowdfunding which is going quite well.

"We have a lot of businesses that have all said, once everything gets the official go ahead that they are more than willing to sponsor the entertainment and infrastructure from the Live in the Park event."

Before the party starts at the park, plans are being formalised for a Pride march through Aylesbury starting at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre heading to Vale Park.

A committee meeting is being organised between members of Aylesbury's LGBT community for February 12.

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Event leaders are hoping to feedback as many crowdsourced ideas sent to the groups on social media at this meeting.

Organisers want all contributors to get in touch with the Pride in Aylesbury team via email.

Artists, businesses, vendors, would-be volunteers and entertainers are all encouraged to reach out by emailing [email protected].

A Pride in Aylesbury spokesperson said: "Thank you for those that have already sent in your details I can assure you every one will be contacted in due course. We are still taking submissions."

People can also submit ideas and queries on the Pride in Aylesbury website here.