Businesses are calling on the organisers of Pride to help them in the future after reporting a loss of trade. Shopkeepers in the Preston Circus area of Brighton say they are forced to shut up during the annual Pride parade because their firms are directly on the path of the parade of floats.

Graham Cook, manager of Badlands Guitars in Preston Road, said the organisers should compensate traders for lost business.

He said: “In effect we are forced to close. The car parking restrictions are in force for the week leading up to the event and there is a ban on parking over the weekend itself. “We have tried staying open and sell- ing the Pride banners and flags – even
pink ukuleles – but it doesn’t work. There are people walking ahead of the parade selling those things so no one needs them by the time they get to Preston Circus.

“I think the organisers should compen- sate the traders. We will lose money on the day which we cannot afford to do. Our margins are very tight. If the organisers offered to compensate traders for a third of the loss, that would help.”

Steve Butchers, showroom manager at Cannadines Bathrooms in Preston Road, said that the shop always closes during the Pride parade.

He said: “It’s pointless staying open. Our customers can’t get near the shop.
Compensation would be a smashing idea.”

Sid Bourne, the manager of Bikes Of Brighton in Preston Road, said he closed his shop around 11am. He said: “It costs me money but it costs me more to stay open.”

But Lee Francis, owner at Brighton Antiques, said compensation was not necessary for one day of the year. He said: “I stay open but I don’t do any trading. I join in the festivities.”

Trevor Edwards, one of the organisers at Brighton and Hove Pride, said that he was disappointed that traders did not make the most of the opportunity. He said: “The parade attracts about 100,000 spectators across the city. This means that these businesses will have an estimated 10,000 people on their doorstep. That is a huge captive market."