THIS year’s Pride has been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Organisers said it was with a “heavy heart that Brighton and Hove Pride has taken the difficult decision to postpone their landmark 30th anniversary celebrations”.

The cancellation is a huge blow to the thousands who look forward to the event each year and the charities and businesses who benefit from the huge parade and party.

Managing director Paul Kemp said: “Pride is a hugely important community fundraising event for our city and planning is a year-round process that involves many meetings with our statutory partners, contractors and suppliers.

“Postponing the 2020 celebrations has been a heartbreaking decision that has been taken following the fast moving Covid-19 pandemic but we know that when the time is right people will want to come together to celebrate our community, city and the amazing NHS, emergency services and key workers.”

Pride was due to take place on August 1 and 2 this year with stars Mariah Carey and The Pussycat Dolls headlining the two days of music at Preston Park.

A Brighton and Hove Pride spokeswoman said: “We are shocked and devastated by the unprecedented turn of events over the past weeks – especially the catastrophic health and economic impacts this pandemic is having on members of our community.

“The decision to postpone has not been taken lightly and with many events still planning to go ahead in July and August we were hoping to wait until closer to the time to avoid disappointing our volunteers, community groups and the public.

“But after carefully monitoring the rapidly evolving Covid-19 pandemic and evaluating the ongoing risks and uncertainty, as well as the additional pressure any large event puts on the emergency services, we have taken the very difficult decision to postpone this year’s Pride Fabuloso anniversary celebration.

“As the UK’s biggest Pride festival that attracts visitors from across the UK and globe and with the potential of travel restrictions and social distancing guidelines to remain in place for an unknown length of time, we cannot in good faith risk the health and safety of our communities, volunteers and participants and proceed with an event that attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors to the city. These are exceptional times and many local charities and community organisations rely on Pride for fundraising to get them through the year.”

The spokeswoman said all existing ticket holders will have their tickets honoured and rolled over to next year.

They can otherwise apply to have their ticket price refunded.

But with so many affected by the cancellation, organisers are appealing for people to donate their ticket money and re-purchase tickets again next year.

The spokeswoman said: “We are appealing to ticket holders to donate their ticket in support of Pride and its essential fundraising. As a thank you, they will have priority purchasing options in next year’s pre-release ticket sale. Customers who are unable to attend next year’s event can apply for a refund at”

Peter Kyle, Labour MP for Hove, backed the decision.

He said: “Pride at the end of the day is about caring and making people safe. It is about the wellbeing of people and this decision is perfectly in line with everything I know Pride to be about.

“But it is a brave and tough decision which will cause a lot of difficulties for its financial viability so we are all going to have to pull together on this.”

Pride raises thousands of pounds for good causes each year, including through the Brighton Rainbow Fund.

A spokesman for the fund said: “We know what a difficult decision it has been for the organisers of Brighton Pride to postpone the planned event in light of the unprecedented challenges that the Covid-19 pandemic is bringing to us all.

“Under the current stewardship, since 2013, the annual event has raised just under a million pounds for good causes in Brighton and Hove, the vast majority of it distributed through The Brighton Rainbow Fund to local LGBTQ specific projects, which make a fundamental difference to the lives of hundreds of people in our communities.

“The Brighton Rainbow Fund is the central hub for distribution of community raised funds, not just from Pride, but from venues, other fundraising groups such as Brighton Bear Weekend, Bear Patrol, our choirs, and individual donors. We currently support over 20 local LGBTQ specific projects.

“With the postponement of Pride, and Brighton Bear Weekend, and the closure of venues, we have no idea yet how much we will have to distribute later in the year.

“On behalf of the projects that we support, and the people that they support, we are asking ticket holders to consider the option of not claiming a refund… in effect making a donation to allow them to continue their valuable work for another year.”

For those who had not bought tickets yet, and would like to contribute directly, there is a donate button on the Brighton Rainbow Fund website

  • The coronavirus Sussex Crisis Fund has been set up to help those affected by the pandemic. The Argus’s charity and American Express have each donated £50,000 to kick-start the appeal. Grants will usually be for up to £5,000. More information is available at www.sussexgiving. To donate visit