Hackney Pride 365
Stories about overcoming adversity and defining historical moments in the gay liberation movement were at the heart of celebrations to mark the end of LGBT History Month in Hackney.
Guests braved a snow storm to support the event at Hackney Town Hall on 28 February. It was also an opportunity to share news about all the events and projects developed over the past year – by the borough’s LGBTQI+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex plus) community – as part of Hackney Pride 365 festival.
The evening was hosted by John Sizzle of The Glory and there were energetic performances from drag artist Rhys’ Pieces, poet Andreena Bogle, and rapper SJ Soulist.
Hackney-born Lavinia Co-op, who travelled the world as part of radical drag troupe Bloolips – which emerged in the 1970s from the Gay Liberation Front movement – talked about her time living and working in New York and performed a song in tribute to the activists she met there including key figures in the Stonewall riots: Marsha P Johnson and Sylvia Rivera.
Maya-Liam, a member of Project Indigo, a Hackney-based LGBTQI+ youth group, gave a powerful speech about their experience of being assaulted in a transphobic hate crime; their personal understanding of gender and sexuality; and read aloud a manifesto for equality created by Project Indigo members.
The Mayor of Hackney, Philip Glanville, spoke about the achievements of the Council’s Hackney Pride 365 festival and announced further plans.
These included a partnership with the Fringe! film festival; an LGBTQI+ family focused picnic as part of the Dalston Children’s festival in May; and a partnership between Hackney Museum and BlackOutUK to collect and share the stories of local QTIPOC (Queer, Trans, Intersex People of Colour).
It’s been an incredible first year for Hackney Pride 365, a huge thanks to everyone who took part. I hope that in 2018, through our work with BlackOutUK and further QTIPOC focused events, we can address the gaps that exist in the national and local narrative, so more young people will see stories that mirror their experience; feel more represented; know where to ask for help; and feel safe enough to participate in future LGBTQI+ focused projects with the Council.
Ronx Ikharia, a doctor at Homerton Hospital who was a guest at the event, added: “As an out and proud black, queer, female, professional living and working in Hackney, I thought it was important to come along to this event, be visible, and celebrate all the amazing LGBTQI+ projects that the Council has supported. Having an openly out gay mayor is wonderful for the community and a great signifier of how far we have come as a society.”
The event also highlighted some of the major achievements of the Hackney Pride 365 festival last year including:
• Hackney’s biggest representation at the Pride in London parade
• Flying the rainbow flag over the Town Hall for Pride and LGBT History Month
• Setting up a Hackney LGBTQI+ business network
• Collaborations with The Glory, VFDalston, Dalston Superstore and the Rio cinema
• Hosting the first LGBT History Month exhibition at Hackney Museum for over a decade
• Creating gender inclusive facilities at the newly refurbished London Fields Lido, with similar plans for other leisure centres in the borough.
If you are interested in developing projects with the Council as part of Hackney Pride 365, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org/ email@example.com; or call: 020 8356 3275/3261 with any ideas or feedback. Keep up to date with Hackney Pride 365 at: www.facebook.com/Pride365