Meet the Soho Angels who look after Pride partygoers
Soho Angels are a group of volunteers who take care of the LGBT+ community on nights out.
Based in Soho, London, and Manchester’s Gay Village, the Angels help bargoers make sure they have a safe night out.
Soho Angel Marina says volunteering is better than an ordinary night out as she “wanted to give back to the community, helping people who are vulnerable.”
Wearing their trademark hot pink, the Soho Angels’ aim is for everyone to End the Night Right.
The scheme is designed to make London’s nightlife a safer space for everyone, and a more inclusive and understanding space for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people.
The Soho Angels are trained by LGBT Foundation and work alongside the Angels scheme in Manchester’s gay village.
The volunteers provide a friendly ear if anyone needs a chat, as well as helping people get home safely.
They even point people to charging stations if their phone battery has died and they can’t find their friends.
Watch the video below to learn more about the Soho Angels’ work:
Why I love being a Soho Angel
Volunteer Dave Morton became a Soho Angel after being inspired by the way his eldest son—who is also gay—was helped on nights out partying in Soho.
“We’re the Soho Angels, not Charlie’s Angels—I don’t have quite as long hair,” he laughs, telling PinkNews about why he began volunteering, while on a shift in Soho.
“It’s just walking around, chatting to people, letting the bouncers know where to reach us.
“We don’t judge at all. If they need more help, we take them back to the Hub where they can see St John’s Ambulance.
“The main thing is just being there for people.”
Last week on his shift, he helped a distressed woman who had been followed by a man.
“We went up to her to make sure she was ok and the guy just ran off.
“So it made her feel safe that we were there and we stayed with her for half an hour until a taxi came.
“You could see someone was about to be in trouble and we actually helped.”
Despite the late nights, Dave says he wouldn’t have it any other way.
“You get home at 6am, knackered, and the adrenaline is still going from helping people.
“But it’s good fun and you make great friends with the other Angels as well, people who you may not ordinarily meet.”
Partnered with LGBT Foundation and Westminster City Council, and proudly supported by Smirnoff, the Angels in Soho are there for anyone who needs water, support, someone to talk to, or a hand getting home.
The Angels also work with St John Ambulance volunteers to provide medical help at the Soho Night Hub every Friday and Saturday night.
To celebrate Pride, Smirnoff is donating 50p from every Smirnoff Soda Smash to the LGBT Foundation on Pride days at participating venues:
London 6 July: Village, Bar Soho, Comptons, Two Brewers, Retro Bar, Halfway 2 Heaven, Kings Arms, Duke Of Wellington, Admiral Duncan, Rupert Street, Salsa, Bao (Greek Street, Picadilly, Regent Street), The Warwick, Tattershall Castle, Slug & Lettuce (Leicester Square,
Hanover St., County Hall, St.Pauls, St. Marys Axe, Tower Bridge, Aldgate, Canary Wharf, Victoria), St. James Tavern.
Brighton 5 August: Popworld, Bao Brighton.
Leeds 4 August: Queens Court, Popworld, Bowers Tap, Slug & Lettuce (Park Row & Boar Lane).
Manchester 24 August: Via, Slug & Lettuce (Albert Sq., Piccadilly), Yates (Printworks).
Look out for the Soho Angels and Village Angels in London, Brighton, Leeds and Manchester on Pride. You can also become a volunteer.