Video: People encouraged to fly the rainbow flag in Norwich

Michelle Savage and friends flying the flag for Norwich Pride.Photo: Bill Smith

Michelle Savage and friends flying the flag for Norwich Pride.Photo: Bill Smith - Credit: Bill Smith - Archant

Norwich looks set to be transformed into a kaleidoscope of colour this week as organisers of Norwich Pride encourage everyone to fly the rainbow flag and celebrate diversity.

Norwich Pride is set to take place on Saturday and the five-day festival Pride 5, celebrating five years of Norwich Pride, starts today.

Lots of organisations have already agreed to fly the flag to mark the occasion – and Norwich Pride organisers are encouraging even more people to get involved.

Among the organisations that will be flying the rainbow flag are the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, Norwich Castle Museum, Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, Norwich City Council, Norwich Puppet Theatre, City College Norwich, Aviva, Hellesdon Hospital and Norfolk County Council.

Mike Stonard, chairman of Norwich Pride 2013, said: 'We want to turn Norwich into a rainbow – a universal symbol of love, harmony and peace and the international symbol of the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans) community.


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'It is the most visual way an organization can show that it celebrates diversity and values its LGBT citizens, customers, students and staff – and it's beautiful.'

As well as flying the rainbow flag, City Hall will also have its balcony bedecked in a rainbow scarf.

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Brenda Arthur, leader of Norwich City Council, said: 'Norwich City Council is proud to fly the rainbow flag and to show its support for Norwich Pride and the local LGBT community.

'Pride has become one of the major events in Norwich's calendar of festivals and celebrations, reflecting the vibrancy, creativity and diversity of our city.

'I wish you well and hope you all have a happy Pride 2013.'

Norfolk police will be hoisting the flag at police headquarters on Saturday.

Temporary chief constable Simon Bailey said: 'The flag represents LGBT equality and is displayed around the world as a sign of diversity and inclusiveness.

'The flag demonstrates our commitment to equality, both within our own workforce and to providing an effective police service to everyone in Norfolk and to tackling hate crime in all its forms.'

Ian Woods, general manager of Norwich Puppet Theatre, said: 'Norwich Puppet Theatre is happy to support Pride and even more so in this fifth anniversary year.

'Arts in general are inclusive for performers and customers alike and the great thing about the rainbow flag is that it is a cheerful and welcoming symbol for all.'

For those who don't have a flagpole, the message is to improvise.

Norwich Pride communications officer Michelle Savage said: 'Let's turn Norwich into a rainbow. If you haven't got a flagpole, improvise!

'We want more window displays in shops, bars and cafes than ever before.'

The Bridewell Museum will be hanging up rainbow bunting while Number 12 Bar and Dining will be hanging two huge rainbow flags from its windows.

Oxfam, in Magdalen Street, is creating a special window display, and Inanna's Festival has created a special window display every year Norwich Pride has taken place.

The Pride Shop opens at the Forum today at 10am and will be selling range of rainbow flags and other items to raise money for Norwich Pride. For more details about Norwich Pride 2013 events visit www.norwichpride.org.uk

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