UKIP plans to ‘show a presence’ at Pride London despite being banned

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

LGBT* in UKIP has said it still lans to “show a presence” at Pride in London, despite having been banned by organisers over “safety concerns”.

Organisers of Pride in London originally approved plans for UKIP LGBT+ to take part in the parade on Saturday 27 June,claiming it would not “discriminate”against them.

However, following a backlash from campaigners including Peter Tatchell, the board reversed its decision, citing “safety” concerns if the group were allowed to march.

A bulletin went out to all UKIP members today urging them to join the LGBT group on Saturday 27 June at Pride in London.

It accused Pride organisers of using “safety” as “an excuse to keep LGBT* in UKIP out of the parade.”

It continues: “Despite this ban, LGBT* in UKIP do plan to show a presence, supporting LGBT rights, inclusion and equality, not to mention our right to be there. It is important that we get as many LGBT people from UKIP to attend, as there will be media interest in us.”

It also asked for RSVPs in order to plan meeting locations.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has said that he doesn’t agree with a UK Independence Party group being banned from Pride in London – which his authority helps to fund.

UKIP’s Suzanne Evans, Liberal Democrats Tim Farron and Lord Paddick and Conservative MP Nigel Evans all told PinkNews that they disagree with the ban.

Nigel Farage last week said he thinks UKIP is “the most demonised party in Britain”, and that it faces “prejudice” for not being allowed to march in Pride in London.

Richard Hendron, the former UKIP candidate for Brentford and Isleworth and organiser of the Pride contingent, previously said the party may take legal action or defy the ban.

He told PinkNews: “I and other members of UKIP have put a lot of time and effort getting everybody within UKIP on board and then getting the entry and organising our participation.

“It is a massive blow not only to us and UKIP, but to equality and inclusion – something that Pride purports to promote.

“The reasons giving for withdrawing our participation are fanciful and nothing more than puff.

“I am currently considering our legal position and all options remain on the table, including seeking an injunction and or defying them and marching on, marching for equality and inclusion regardless of the consequences.”