King’s Lynn’s first Pride parade hailed a stunning success

Chilu Stoker and Tiger-Lily Stoker at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Chilu Stoker and Tiger-Lily Stoker at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Well over a thousand people took to the streets to dance, sing and spread love at West Norfolk's first ever Pride parade in King's Lynn.

The Tuesday Market Place was a riot of colour as men, women and children of all ages- and their pets - gathered in preparation for the parade at 1pm.

Revellers with glittered faces, vibrant outfits and colourful wigs waved rainbow flags and danced to YMCA as a warm up before the march.

Jo Rust, a member of King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride, who had organised the event, gave an empowering speech on the history of Pride.

King John getting a makeover at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: John Hocknell

King John getting a makeover at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: John Hocknell - Credit: John Hocknell

Speaking on stage, she said: 'I want you all to remember that Pride is political - we wouldn't be here to celebrate if it wasn't for the hard work that others have had to put in before us.

'We have to remember that the first Pride wasn't a parade it was a riot in response to a police raid on a gay bar, we are lucky we have come so far.

'We will continue to fight until we have full equality, until every single LGBT person can walk down the street without fear, harassment or discrimination.'

Lisa H and Rebecca Walton at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Lisa H and Rebecca Walton at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

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The parade set off from the market place and through the town, where passers-by roared their support and shop windows were decorated with rainbow displays.

Norfolk Police were on hand to escort the crowds safely to The Walks, where the celebration continued with stalls, music, food and drinks in the sunshine.

One officer seen dancing with the crowds was Inspector Lou Provart, along with volunteer police cadets and Norfolk Police equality and diversity manager Julie Inns.

Norfolk Police equality and diversity manager Julie Inns at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018.

Norfolk Police equality and diversity manager Julie Inns at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Insp Lou Provart said: 'This is a fantastic turn out for King's Lynn, this sends the right message to people in Norfolk - that LGBT hate crime will not be tolerated, we all stand together.'

Ms Inns added: 'I'm just absolutely amazed by the community and the people of King's Lynn, the sheer amount of people in town just shows this was needed and it will continue to grow.'

Pride organiser Francis Bone said plans are already underway for next year's Pride event, adding: 'It is overwhelming, we didn't expect so many people.

Niamph enjoying herself at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Niamph enjoying herself at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

'It is amazing, I have cried three times today, we have had such a positive response.'

Laura Bunting, Kristen Hanks and Caitlyn Farr at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: T

Laura Bunting, Kristen Hanks and Caitlyn Farr at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Perdi Gauntley and April Follen, of Just Essentials, at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Pic

Perdi Gauntley and April Follen, of Just Essentials, at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Juliet Holywood and Rebecca Mather at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Juliet Holywood and Rebecca Mather at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Norfolk Police Inspector Lou Provart with police cadets at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018.

Norfolk Police Inspector Lou Provart with police cadets at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Norfolk Police Inspector Lou Provart and the police cadets at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 201

Norfolk Police Inspector Lou Provart and the police cadets at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Robert Harrod and Andrew Billington at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Robert Harrod and Andrew Billington at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Carla Fox and Theodore Fox at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Carla Fox and Theodore Fox at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Kathleen Harrod, Robert Harrod, Katie Haydn-Slater, Kate Green and Andrew Billington at King's Lynn

Kathleen Harrod, Robert Harrod, Katie Haydn-Slater, Kate Green and Andrew Billington at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Gary Shew and Sadie Bowen with Kaiser at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Gary Shew and Sadie Bowen with Kaiser at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Staff from CGL Norfolk at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Staff from CGL Norfolk at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

The King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride celebrations continued in The Walks. Picture: Taz Ali

The King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride celebrations continued in The Walks. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

The Tuesday Market Place in King's Lynn is a riot of colour at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 20

The Tuesday Market Place in King's Lynn is a riot of colour at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Clare Bass and Niamph at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali

Clare Bass and Niamph at King's Lynn and West Norfolk Pride 2018. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

Crowds gather in the Tuesday Market Place in King's Lynn ahead of the Pride parade. Picture: Taz Ali

Crowds gather in the Tuesday Market Place in King's Lynn ahead of the Pride parade. Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

King's Lynn police station fliying the rainbow flag for the town's first ever Pride parade Picture:

King's Lynn police station fliying the rainbow flag for the town's first ever Pride parade Picture: Taz Ali - Credit: Archant

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