Sadiq Khan invites LGBTQ+ groups to take over London Pride celebrations

Sadiq Khan, behind him in a person holding a rainbow Pride flag

LGBTQ+ community organisations have been invited to apply to take over London’s Pride parade after a major reckoning for the current organisers.

The search for organisations takes place as non-profit Pride in London, which has run its event for the last 10 years, has reached the end of its five-year funding agreement with Greater London Authority.

Pride in London has been trying to repair relationships with communities after damming accounts of racism and bullying within the organisation. Its five most senior members quit following the resignations of its entire advisory board.

Community-led organisations have now been asked to apply for up to £625,000 to deliver Pride celebrations in London for the next five years

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said he will also commit over the same five-year period to supporting UK Black Pride, and to hosting his annual Pride reception at City Hall.

“I’m delighted to invite LGBTQI+ community organisations to deliver the capital’s Pride celebrations for the next five years,” Khan said. 

“Pride has had a huge impact on our society over the last five decades and this funding will help start a new era.

“I encourage LGBTQI+ community-led groups to step forward to run the events and help show the world that London is a beacon of inclusiveness, acceptance and diversity.”

Trans+ Pride in London 2022

(Mark Kerrison/Getty Images)

Pride in London was hit with criticism after its then- most senior Black official Rhammel Afflick quit in March 2021 over a “culture of racism” and ” lack of diversity” at the organisation.

This prompted a wave of resignations – including at least 20 volunteers and its community advisory board – shortly after.

The organisation’s five most senior members also stepped down following the damning accusations.

The organisation has since referenced its new leadership team, a “zero-tolerance policy for inappropriate behaviour”, a new code of conduct and “a suite of people policies, and processes supported by a new, qualified people team”.

However, many in the community remain unconvinced.

Afflick claimed in February 2022 that little has changed.

Speaking to MyLondon, he said: “Now that it’s been almost a year since I resigned, I just wonder what little we have to show for that, and that is really sad to think about.

“There is no evidence I’ve seen to suggest that anything is different. Many people in the community remain disappointed.”

Pride in London’s new director of communications told MyLondon: “Needless to say the past year has seen major changes… and the organisation that my predecessor departed is not the organisation that exists today.

“Lessons have been learned, and meaningful action continues to be taken.”

Pride in London has been contacted for comment.