Openly gay actor Sir Ian McKellen marched in today’s London pride parade.

The X-Men star, 75, braved the weather to march with Stonewall in the parade.Around 20,000 people are estimated to have taken part in the march, which set off from Baker Street, winding through Oxford Street, Piccadilly Circus, Pall Mall and Trafalgar Square, before ending at Whitehall.

The veteran actor spoke to Stonewall’s annual Youth Pride Brunch this morning, before joining the LGB group’s 400 marchers, at one point carrying the organisation’s banner.Stonewall’s Acting Chief Executive Ruth Hunt said: “London Pride is a celebration that the whole capital can be proud of.

“It’s inspirational to see so many thousands of people not just celebrating everything we’ve achieved as a community but also continuing to fight for LGBT equality here in Britain and around the world.

“The fact that so many young people marched with Stonewall shows that the spirit of Pride is alive and well.”

McKellen also made an appearance at the Pride celebrations in Trafalgar Square, introducing the headline act, Eurovision winner Conchita Wurst.

London’s Lord Mayor, Fiona Woolf, announced earlier this week that McKellen is to be awarded the honour of Freedom of the City.

He has a long-standing association with Stonewall, causing controversy in 2010, when Bristol councillor Chris Windows said he was “unhappy and a little disturbed” that the actor had been visiting schools with the group to deliver anti-homophobia workshops.