Supergay, Middlesbrough’s annual celebration of LGBT life, returns next Monday. The festival will last until 11 September and is expected to be the biggest yet, featuring theatre, comedy, cabaret and more.

Beginning in 2007, Supergay is one of the UK’s fastest-growing annual Pride events. Last year it attracted more than 4,500 punters; this year it is expecting to fetch up to 6,000 attendees.

Initially, the celebration was a much smaller affair, consisting mainly of a parade of drag queens and performers making their way through Middlesbrough. This year, it has attracted a line-up including X Factor finalist Lloyd Daniels, along with Abba tribute act Abba’s Angels.

The festival will conclude on Saturday 11 September with a pride parade, which will set out at Zetland Square by the railway station and head to Centre Square and the main event.

The parade will be led by drumming group The Bangshees, beginning at at noon. There will also be a Party in the Park in the city’s Centre Square from noon to 5 p.m.

Chair of the event, Simon Hatfield, said: “Some people are still amazed that a festival like this can exist in Middlesbrough. Each year we prove that it can.

“Many regional queer folk attended last year and we hope that they will come out again this year to support us. We have managed to raise more funds than last year for the festival, [which is] hugely down to our supportive partners, Middlesbrough Council, the NHS in the Tees Valley and the University of Teesside.”