Sunday, September 24, 2023

“Bursting With Pride” – Are You Ready for Pride in Belper?

First off, what is Pride in Belper?

It’s a brand new festival for Belper.  It’s happening on Saturday 3rd August, starting at 11.30am.  It began life as a plan for a picnic, but has grown from its first humble ambition as more and more of Belper loved the idea and wanted it to be bigger.  With the community adding extra pieces to the festival that the organisers have expanded.

This is Pride with a difference.  It’s not about labelling and singling out marginalised groups or types of people, identifying them as different.  It’s an inclusive event intended to celebrate diversity, not to highlight difference.  This is everyone’s Pride.  Every kind of person, whether they use a label or not, is being celebrated, together.  Inclusively, and respectful of everyone.

Here are the Pride in Belper team explaining this concept …

Pride in Belper states the Mission as,

“Pride in Belper supports our communities in the pursuit of our unequivocal rights to be known, be heard, be understood, be accepted, be respected, and to celebrate the beauty of who we are.”

With a Vision,

“No matter who you love, how you identify, or who you choose to be, you will be safe, valued, equal, and very proud.”

And Values,

“Our community has the right to be free from fear, and free to discover and love as our true selves. We work to honour and advance the freedom of everyone in our community.
The voices and stories of our community are as diverse as they are wonderful and beautiful. We work to make sure that each of us can be heard and that we listen to each other.
Because love aways prevails and we are all deserving of it.
Our community is made up of many different identities. Understanding is how we come to know and care for each other. We will help to grow understanding within our community and beyond.”


The Pride in Belper team are already mostly known to the town through the many other events they are in involved in, including Belper Arts Trail, Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site, Love Belper, Accessible Belper, and Derwent Valley on Demand. They are themselves diverse, and thoroughly immersed in all that is Belper.

Chair of Pride in Belper, Sarah Barley-McMullen told us,

“Belper is great at celebrating things – now its time to celebrate the people of Belper.”


You can join the Facebook Event HERE

The town centre and other venues around the town have really dedicated themselves to this celebration with window displays, flags, and creative individual decor, shouting that they are all “Bursting with Pride” (the tagline of the festival) and ready to be part of it.  The level of involvement is unprecedented, even for Belper.  The town has been transformed with a beautiful array of colour and joy.

The shops and pubs will be judged for which have the best windows or displays.  The Mayor will be doing the official judging, and businesses are encouraged to post their Pride decor to the Pride in Belper Facebook page.

The festival has the support of Derbyshire LGBT+, Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service, The Belper Arts Trail, Belper Town Council, Love Belper, Accessible Belper, and Fleet Arts.

The University of Derby has provided 50 LGBT+ flags to fly down King Street, which the Town Council are helping to put in place.  Belper Rocks have also painted some special Pride in Belper rocks and hidden them around the town for people to find.


You will be able to get yourself a Pride in Belper festival wristband for £2, and there will also be an 8 page Pride Guide.

Several pubs in Belper will be stocking Pride in Belper Ale, which has been specially brewed for the occasion by the Pentrich Brewing Company.

Strutt With Pride

At 11:30am we gather on the Market Place.

Mayor Simon Mallett will formally open Pride in Belper at 12pm, after a few words of welcome.

Then the ‘Strutt with Pride’ begins.  This involves a Pride March from the Market Place, down King Street and back up to the Memorial Gardens.   The Strutt will be led by the Golden Rainbows, an over-50s LGBT+ group of Belper folk.  Banners are being made, many of them heart shaped.

The Market Place

The Market Place will see many stalls from supportive companies including the NHS and Rolls Royce.

Derbyshire Fire and Rescue will be bringing their Rainbow Fire Engine.

And Derbyshire Constabulary will be helping the Pride in Belper team with an information and help point.  This is where you can pick up Pride Guides and buy a Pride in Belper wristband.

Number28 | Market Place

No. 28 will have its usual cafe, along with Information and Support, and a local LGBT+ history display.  From 3pm there will be spoken word performances from She Speaks UK.  There will also be an evening event at No. 28.

Cafe 10am-4pm
Information and support 11-4pm
Derbyshire LGBT+ history display
She Speaks spoken word performance from 3pm

“She Speaks UK promotes performance poetry and performance spaces for women in the Arts and are trans and non binary inclusive. Jen Lewis, Emerciana Desouza and Aoife O’Connor will present a 45 minutes set of performance around the theme of inclusivity, equality and diversity in the beautiful comfort of Number 28.”

The Memorial Gardens

The Strutt With Pride will end in the Memorial Gardens at approximately 12.15pm, which is the time that the entertainment starts.  For adults the Rainbow Stage will be providing music all day, including some firm Belper favourites.  There are a huge amount of children’s activities on offer in the Children’s Zone.

There will also be many food, drink and other stalls including, Beer Trap/Pump it up, Poppy Grey Rainbow themed Art & Jewellery, Posh Cow Ice Cream, Flipping Fast Crepes, Aunt Sally’s Snack Shack, Artisan Brownies & Blondies, Heeltap, and Face Painting by Abi Sawyer.

The Rainbow Stage Line Up
12.00 Sue Warren
12.30 Native Bear
13.00 Diana Mehira Belly Dancers
13.30 The Ferretts
14.00 One Drop Pony
15.00 Jess Horne
15.30 Captive Audience
16.15 Water for Dogs
17.15 TBC
18.00 Michelle Laverick
18.30 Sue Mac & Sarah Barley-McMullen


Fleet Arts will have two art acivities available to join in with in the Memorial Gardens:

  • A drop-in opportunity to help decorate large letters spelling LOVE which will be part of a mural to be completed at their site this summer
  • A team-up with Belper School to make large heart sculptures
The Children’s Zone
  •  ‘Hopes, Dreams and Inbetweens Den’
    Rob Bounds – Storytelling and crafts, celebrating individuality and diversity.
    The Sparkly Storytellers (Ben Spiller and 1623 Theatre) present JULIAN IS A MERMAID by Jessica Love. Upbeat gender-positive storytelling and a fun creative workshop and musical mermaid parade. Suitable for children aged 5+ and their families.
  • Twistin Tots with Jacqui Davis – 3.30-4pm  – Music and movement
  • Captive Audience  – 3 solo performances by young local actors on the themes of Equality and Diversity. Drama games Sheila Kay Sly
  • Derbyshire Toy Library with Ann Marie McMillan – 12-5pm – toys from young children to play with.
  • Woodlanders Forest School with Kerry Gill – 12-5pm – Nature Trail within the Memorial Gardens
  • Bubble Area with BOOM Magazine – relaxation bubble space for all ages
Evening Events

These evening events have been arranged by the individual establishments or performers, and where appropriate, need to be booked with the venue or performer.

Nourish @ No. 44 Presents Gorge!
Dinner, Drag, Cabaret, Disco and Magic
7pm – late
Facebook Event Page
A showcase of LGBTQIA spoken word and variety performers from across the Midlands.
Featuring performances from Aoife O’Connor and Sophie Sparham
Number 28 Belper
Start 7pm
Pay What You Feel
Facebook Event Page
Delicata @ Old King’s Head
Female Acoustic Duo
£7.52 through Eventbrite
Facebook Event Page
Genre Fluid by Dan Webber @ No.28
The stand-up poet, reluctant bear and attempted vegan strips… away labels of life, love, the arts and the LGBTQ+ community in this fast-paced, honest and hilarious debut. Under constant pressure from marketing people to decide whether he is a comic or poet, Dan navigates through the confusing world of definitions.Final preview before Edinburgh Festival Fringe
Facebook Event Page
Pride @ Arkwrights
Music from:

The brain child of singer/songwriter Toby Ingram bringing a blend of emo, alternative and folk with thought provoking lyrics and emotive guitar lines.OLA WILSON.
Singer-songwriter Ola Wilson mostly plays her own poignant, political & (occasionally) humorous songs….SONNY & ALAN
Two randoms who got in touch for a bit of collaboration work and haven’t looked back. With their passion of playing music and great rapport. This jammy duo can play to make the place feel emotionally caressed, or energetically festivised. Their approach in performing brings them a wide array of covers throughout the last 50 years. Requests encouraged… (But not Wild Thing! )
Free – buy booze
Facebook Event Page
Screening of PRIDE @ The Ritz, followed by Q&A with Dai Donovan (miner depicted in film)
The true story of the mutual support between striking Welsh miners and the London LGBT+ community.
Starring Bill Nighy, Imelda Staunton, Paddy Considine, Andrew Scott, & Dominic West

Film is rated 15

Purple seats £8.50 for Adults
Luxury Back Row seats £10.00
A Sofa for Two £20.00
Book tickets: 01773 822224

Clare Washbrook

Current Editor-in-Chief News and magazine editor since 1995 Post-grads: Literature; Theatre; Journalism, Ethics & Law Community Affiliations: Belper Goes Green, Belper's WW1 Poppies, Amber Valley Solidarity No political party memberships/affiliations.

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