Riot damage won’t stop Manchester Pride, organisers say

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Manchester Pride will go ahead this weekend, organisers have said.

The city centre is recovering from yesterday’s widespread riots and looting and businesses in the gay village suffered some damage.

Venues including Tribeca, Churchills, Via and View have broken windows but the gay village is said to be open for business.

The damage was mild compared with that suffered by other businesses in the city centre – clothing and electrical shops were smashed and raided, while police had to deal with arson, violence and firebombs.

More than 100 people have been arrested.

Jackie Crozier, festival director of Manchester Pride, said: “What happened last night in Manchester is an absolute disgrace. We live amongst some fantastic people in an amazing city that has grown on its own organically.

“We must now stand up for Manchester; business will be going ahead as usual in our gay village and Manchester Pride will be going ahead. We hope to see you all there in a few weeks to celebrate the positive elements of the city of Manchester: its diversity, community and strength.”

This year’s festival celebrates 21 years of Pride in the city and has a parade theme of ‘Best of British’.

Pixie Lott, Blue and The Sugababes are set to perform.