Over 400,000 people gathered in Brighton for the city’s annual Pride celebration on Saturday, with superstar Britney Spears headlining the concert.
The seaside city hosted fans and supporters dressed in rainbow colors and elaborate costumes for the largest Pride celebration to date. Police cars and fire engines were decorated with rainbow colors as well, drawing inspiration from the brightly colored LGBT pride flag, which is a symbol of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender pride and social movements.
Britney Spears headlined the concert in Preston Park as the evening approached in a “dazzling display of inclusivity.” Sharing a snap and video from the concert on her Instagram Saturday evening, Spears showed her love for the fans.
“Brighton Pride…. all 57,000 of you are perfectly beautiful,” the pop star wrote. “Heard it was a record breaking turnout!!! Thank you for a fabulous show…my fabulous fans. I love you all”
The morning began with thousands filling the streets from Hove Lawns to Preston Park for the annual parade. Supporters traveled from all over the country to soak up the sun and colors, creating millions of dollars of profit for the local economy.
Over 100 floats took part in the parade this year, decorated in psychedelic colours to celebrate the ‘Colour My World’ theme, according to the Daily Star. Supporters lined the streets to catch the floats while some watched from aerial balconies.
Program director Paul Kemp told crowds it was “more important than ever” for the LGBT community and supporters to stand together against prejudice. The event worked with local law enforcement to ensure safety of Pride supporters, saying “public safety is the main priority.”
Police soon warned attenders to avoid the “Chupa Chups” pills which they say are sold by dealers in the area, as the pills are considered deadly, containing “contaminated” Ecstasy. The tablets are found to contain several “adulterant substances” including PMA, a substance which has been linked to several deaths according to MetroUK.
This year was the first year at the Brighton Pride where uniformed police officers marched in the parade through the center of the city.
Brighton was not the only city to celebrate dazzling equality on Saturday, as Belfast, Stockholm and Amsterdam held their annual Pride celebrations as well.
Irish Taoisieach Leo Varadkar is Ireland’s first openly gay leader. Attending Belfast Pride, Varadkar said is was “only a matter of time” before same-sex marriage is legalized in Northern Ireland.
Northern Ireland is the only part of the British Isles where same-sex marriage remains outlawed.