Rear view of group of men wearing kilts walking arm in arm along Thistle Street, Edinburgh, Scotland.

LGBTQ+ EVENTS GUIDE 2020

Pride parades, film festivals and bear parties: the UK's LGBTQ+ calendar is jam-packed with fun and flamboyant events. Explore our pick of this year’s most exciting dates for your diary, here.

MARCH

Rear view of same sex male couple standing on Millennium Bridge, London, England.

   BFI Flare, London

   A major cultural event for members of the LGBTQ+ community and film buffs alike, past highlights of the film
   festival include premieres of James Franco’s Interior Leather Bar, Lilting starring Ben Whishaw, and JT LEROY,
   featuring Kristen Stewart and Laura Dern. Most screenings are held at the BFI’s home in Southbank.

   When: 18 - 29 March
   Where: BFI Southbank, south London. Nearest tube station: Waterloo.
   For more information, visit https://whatson.bfi.org.uk/flare/Online/

 

MAY

Great British Bear Bash, Manchester

The Great British Bear Bash returns to Manchester’s Gay Village with a weekend full of social events including pool party, cabaret, 'super-beareoke', a history of Manchester walking tour and much more.

When: 30 April - 4 May
Where: Manchester is two hours northwest of London by train.
For more information: www.manbears-manchester.co.uk

 

View from a height over the rooftops of Oxford city, the historic buildings and the landmarks of the university city. Night. Buildings lit up.

Oxford Pride Festival, Oxford

Oxford Pride is a celebration of lesbian, gay, bi, trans and queer life in Oxfordshire. The festival aims to promote awareness of the diversity of LGBTQ+ communities by providing information, education and entertainment. The Oxford Pride Parade takes place on 30 May.

When: 22 - 30 May
Where: Oxford is just over one hour west of London by train.
For more information, visit https://www.oxford-pride.org.uk/ 

 

Birmingham Pride, Birmingham

Birmingham Pride is one of the UK’s largest two-day LGBTQ+ festivals, during which the streets of the city's gay village pulsate with a carnival parade and live music. Don't miss the dance arena with big name DJs, a cabaret marquee, a women’s area and a lip-sync stage, too. 

When: 23 - 24 May
Where: Birmingham is 90 minutes northwest of London by train.
For more information, visit www.birminghampride.com

 

 

JUNE

Brighton Bear Weekend, Brighton

Celebrating their tenth anniversary in 2020, Britain’s bear community are sure to come out to play for this extra special Brighton Bear Weekend. This increasingly popular date for bears and cubs comprises a range of events, including a garden party, a club night, a Sunday roast and bear-a-oke. 

When: 18 - 22 June
Where: Brighton is one hour south of London by train.
For more information, visit www.brightonbearweekend.com

 

Rear view of group of men wearing kilts walking arm in arm along Thistle Street, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Pride Edinburgh, Edinburgh

This year Pride Edinburgh, Scotland’s national LGBTQ+ festival, will celebrate its 25th anniversary with an inclusive 'let it be' theme, so get ready to feel the love! Combining a colourful march through the city with a health and community fair and live music, the event brings together politicians, activist and individuals to support diversity and personal identity. 

When: 13 June
Where: Edinburgh is in Scotland, four and a half hours north of London by train.
For more information, visit www.prideedinburgh.org.uk

 

Pride in London, London

The Pride in London festival encompasses theatre shows, comedy gigs, exhibitions and most importantly, the annual Pride in London parade and street party . The parade winds its way by London landmarks while a huge stage in Trafalgar Square hosts live performances and speeches. Soho takes over at night with performances and parties in many of the pubs and clubs.

When: 27 June
Where: Parade starts from Portland Place and continues along Oxford Circus, before finishing at Whitehall.
For more information, visit www.prideinlondon.org

 

JULY

Brighton Pride

Bristol Pride, Bristol

Voted one of the UK’s best Pride events, Bristol Pride’s 14 day festival schedule has included an award-winning film festival, theatre, comedy, parade and massive music festival. The main day starts with a parade through the centre of town, leading to a massive outdoor music festival featuring amzing local and international acts.

When: Pride Festival runs 26 June - 11 July, Pride parade Saturday 11 July
Where: Bristol is just under two hours west of London by train.
For more information, visit www.pridebristol.co.uk

 

UK Black Pride, London

The UK Black Pride festival is one of Europe’s largest events for the African, Asian, Middle Eastern, Latin American and Caribbean-heritage LGBTQ+ community. Previous years have blended live music, politics and poetry with a carnival atmosphere, making it a fantastic free day out for the whole community.

When: TBC July
Where: Location TBC for 2020
For more information, visit www.ukblackpride.org.uk

 

Sparkle Weekend, Manchester

Britain’s transgender community comes together to celebrate and shine at Manchester’s Sparkle Weekend and Sparkle Ball. This is the world’s largest free-to-attend celebration of gender diversity, welcoming all members of the transgender community as well as friends and families. Since 2005’s one-day inaugural event, it’s expanded into a three-day schedule of culture, music, comedy, film, sport and debate.

When: 10 - 12 July
Where: Manchester is two hours by train northwest of London.
For more info, visit www.sparkle.org.uk

 

L fest

L Fest, Llandudno

Britain’s award-winning L Fest brings lesbian music, arts, comedy and cabaret to Llandudno in Wales. In addition to entertainment on the numerous stages, there are workshops, family activities, sports and games, a cinema and club nights. Free camping is included in the weekend ticket and children under 16 go free. 2020 is L Fest’s final year, although smaller events will continue to run. Tickets for this year sold out within hours, but you can add your name to their waiting list for the chance to experience this fantastic event for the very last time.

When: 24 - 26 July
Where: Bodafon Farm in Llandudno, North Wales; just under four hours northwest of London by train.
For more information, visit www.lfest.co.uk

 

Same sex male couple walking down Ashton Lane in Glasgow

Pride Glasgow, Glasgow

Scotland’s largest LGBTQ+ Pride Festival, Pride Glasgow is a two-day event held annually in summer. The parade is a colourful rainbow display, and inevitably includes some kilt-clad Scotsmen. Usually held at Kelvingrove Park, the party has in previous years welcomed gay pop star Joe McElderry and lesbian musician and actress Heather Peace.

When: TBC 
Where: Glasgow is in Scotland, four and a half hours north of London by train.
For more information, visit http://festival.pride.scot/

 

Northern Pride, Newcastle

Celebrating pride in northeast England, Northern Pride is a three-day event in Newcastle. More than 12,000 people have joined the parade in previous years, plus there has been a main stage featuring great acts, community market stalls, a youth zone, fun fair, cabaret tent and dance tent. There’s usually even a tea tent for those who appreciate a moment of calm with a cuppa!

When: 17 - 19 July
Where: Newcastle is just over three hours north of London by train.
For more information, visit www.northern-pride.com

 

IW Pride, Isle of Wight

Expect plenty of top class entertainment at this fully inclusive and diverse Pride celebration, taking place on the sandy beach of Ryde. The parade will see dazzling floats, music and dancing along the streets – don’t miss this fabulous beach party celebration!

When: 18 July
Where: The Isle of Wight is an island off the south coast of England, a little over two hours from London by train and ferry. 
For more information, visit www.iwpride.org

 

Belfast Pride, Belfast

Northern Ireland’s largest LGBTQ+ festival, Belfast Pride attracts more than 50,000 people for ten days of celebrations. The highlight is Saturday’s Pride Parade, extending from the gay neighbourhood around Union Street and Donegall Street, all the way to City Hall, then back again for a massive street party.

When: 24 July - 2 August, Pride day is 1 August
Where: Belfast is in Northern Ireland, 80 minutes by plane from London.
For more information, visit www.belfastpride.com

 

Liverpool Pride, Liverpool

Since its beginnings in 2010, Liverpool's festival has been one of the UK's most flamboyant Pride events. With fun and fabulous themes like Rainbow Circus, Glam Fairy Tales and Liverpool Icons, you can expect a buzzing weekend of celebrations in 2020.

When: 25 July
Where: Liverpool is just over two hours northwest of London by train.
For more information, visit www.liverpoolpride.co.uk

 

AUGUST

Performers at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, posing in the city centre.

Edinburgh International and Fringe Festival, Edinburgh

Edinburgh welcomes hundreds of new guests in the summer, drawing visitors and world class performers from across the globe for the festival season. The Scottish capital becomes an explosion of colour and music, events, performances, comedy dance and more for the annual Edinburgh International Festival and Fringe Festival – which together make up the largest arts festival in the world.

When: 7 - 31 August
Where: Edinburgh is in Scotland, four and a half hours north of London by train.
For more information, visit www.edinburghfestivalcity.com

 

Brighton & Hove Pride, Brighton

UK’s most popular international Pride Festival, Brighton & Hove Pride attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. The main day sees a huge parade through the city, as well as an unmissable festival, dance tents and a community village. 2020 celebrates the 30th anniversary of the event with Fabuloso – Pride in the Park, while the seafront road Marine Parade will once again be transformed into a fabulous Pride Village Party complete with entertainment zones dedicated to cabaret, drag artists and DJs.

When: 31 July - 2 August 
Where: Brighton is one hour south of London by train.
For more information, visit www.brighton-pride.org

 

Leeds Pride, Leeds

Yorkshire’s gay community comes together for Leeds Pride every August. Expect a pride parade and hours of entertainment including keynote speakers, local LGBT talent and famous pop acts.

When: 2 August
Where: Leeds is just over two hours north of London by train.
For more information, visit www.leedspride.com.

 

 

Pride Cymru in Cardiff

Pride Cymru, Cardiff

Pride Cymru is Wales' largest annual celebration of equality and diversity. Marking its 21st anniversary this year, the event will see thousands of revellers take to the streets for a festival of colour, fun, entertainment and friendship.

When: TBC
Where: Cardiff is in Wales, two hours west of London by train.
For more information, visit www.pridecymru.co.uk

 

Manchester Pride, Manchester

Manchester’s Gay Village plays host to one of the biggest dates in the LGBTQ+ calendar: Manchester Pride. In 2019 the impressive festivities hosted a fab new format focusing on key events - Manchester Pride Live, the Superbia Weekend, the Gay Village Party, the Candlelit Vigil, Manchester Pride Parade and the Youth Parade. Showcasing art, culture and sport and with superstar performers as the headline acts, this unmissable event is a joyful toast to the diversity of LGBTQ+ life.

When: 28-31 August
Where: Manchester is two hours northwest of London by train.
For more information, visit www.manchesterpride.com

 

Walsall Pride, Walsall, England

This community-run event celebrates the diverse LGBTQ+ community in and around Walsall, and aims to raise awareness, promote inclusivity and break down barriers through a series of fun and informative events including cabaret, theatre and health and wellbeing stands.

When: 29 August
Where: Walsall is two hours northwest of London by train.
For more information, visit www.walsallpride.org

 

 

OCTOBER

Iris Prize Festival, Cardiff

Held every October, the annual Iris Prize Festival is Cardiff’s LGBTQ+ alternative to Cannes. Join in six days of international film screenings, panel sessions and parties, as 30 short films by or about LGBTQ+ people compete to win the top accolade.

When: 6-11 October
Where: Cardiff is in Wales, two hours west of London by train.
For more information, visit www.irisprize.org

EXPLORE OUR LGBT CITY GUIDES

London

Soak up the buzzing atmosphere of Soho – the original heartland of London’s gay community - or checkout Vauxhall’s legendary nightclub scene.

Brighton

Considered by many to be the gay capital of the UK, Brighton is packed with possibilities, from outrageous drag nights to an annual Bear Festival.

Manchester

Centred around the pedestrianised cobbles of Canal Street, Manchester’s gay village is one of the biggest and best-known in Britain.

Birmingham

Home to the biggest 2 day LGBT festival in the UK, Birmingham’s burgeoning gay scene is vibrant and multi-cultural.

Glasgow

The regenerated Merchant City district is one of the prettiest in the city and packed full of fantastic LGBT bars, venues and saunas.

Edinburgh

Boasting the largest gay scene in Scotland, Edinburgh’s vibrant ‘Pink Triangle’ is the place to visit for low-key pubs, lively clubs, and delicious British grub.

Newcastle

Packed with bars, bistros, and late-night clubs, Newcastle boasts one of the most thriving gay scenes in the UK.

Bristol

Home to stylish hotels, lively bars, and the largest free Pride in the UK, Bristol is a dream destination for LGBT travelers.