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Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners to lead this year’s London Pride

Naith Payton May 24, 2015

The people who were the real-life inspirations for the film “Pride” are to lead this year’s Pride parade in London.

Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners were a group of working-class campaigners who fund raised for striking Welsh miners in the 1980s.

Their inspirational story was the basis of the award winning film “Pride”.

The group includes Jonathan Blake, played by Dominic West in the film, who was one of the first people in the UK to be diagnosed with HIV. He is now 65.

This year LGSM will lead the parade, just as they did in the film – and in real life in 1985.

The group re-formed last year as a response to the film.

Co-founder and secretary Mike Jackson said: “The history books show that we ‘lost’ the strike.

“That’s true, and the fallout for those communities has been tragic. But we’re also here to say that we won a lot.

“Our experiences show how much can be achieved when we stand together.

“This is a fundamental part of our history, of LGBT rights and of working people’s rights. We are not two separate communities; we are the same.”

Group founder Mark Ashton, who died due to AIDS in 1987, said something very similar at the time. “One community should give solidarity to another. It is really illogical to say, ‘I’m gay and I’m into defending the gay community but I don’t care about anything else.’ It’s ludicrous.

“It’s not just about defending the miners; it’s about defending the right to organise.”

Former Labour leader Ed Miliband said he “blubbed” when he watched the film.

More: AIDS, HIV, Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners, LGSM, London, London pride, miners' strike, Pride, Pride London

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