Pride London 2008 attended by 825,000 people
Official figures released today reveal that the capital hosted one of largest Pride events in the world last weekend.
The Metropolitan Police said they estimate 825,000 people attended the event.
The police numbers are calculated by specialist analysis of CCTV and aerial photography.
Colm Howard-Lloyd, a Director of Pride London, commented:
“We are always quite cautious about these figures; my mother taught me you shouldn’t boast.
“I fell off my chair a number of times when we were told that nearly twice as many people attended the event than in 2007.
“I hope this sends a strong message of togetherness not just to LGBT people in the UK but also to those in countries such as the Czech Republic, Hungary and Bulgaria who have struggled to be allowed to celebrate Pride recently.”
Despite an incident in Trafalgar Square where some trans people were directed to use a disabled toilet, which Pride organisers later apologised for, the event was peaceful.
“This year London held the largest Pride event the UK has seen,” said Paul Birrell, chair of Pride London.
“We are particularly grateful to the police and other agencies who worked with us throughout the year to deliver a safe and fun event.
“Their advice and support has been invaluable and we were so pleased with the policing of the event.
“Thanks should also go to our security and event-stewarding contractor, SFM, who did a particularly outstanding job of looking after more than three quarters of a million people.
“The biggest thanks though must go to the hundreds of volunteers who gave up their pride day to steward the parade, run the stages and be involved in all areas of the event.
“Without them Pride London simply wouldn’t happen.”
Mr Birrell urged all those who enjoyed London’s most outstanding free day out to back Pride’s campaign with Health Initiatives to raise £50,000 for a weekend HIV testing and support clinic in central London, which people can still contribute to by texting “HI CLINIC” to 84424.
Donations can also be made via www.justgiving.com/hiclinic.