The famous Hook Norton Brewery Shire Horses attended the first ever Banbury Pride event last weekend.The famous Hook Norton Brewery Shire Horses attended the first ever Banbury Pride event last weekend.
The famous Hook Norton Brewery Shire Horses attended the first ever Banbury Pride event last weekend.

In pictures: Organisers say 'Banbury’s first Pride was even better than we dreamed'

Organisers have thanked the town and sponsoring businesses for helping to make Banbury’s first Pride event a success.

Crowds packed onto Butchers Row for a weekend of entertainment, including live bands, drag queens, quizzes and games.

The event started on Friday (May 31) evening and continued until Sunday (June 2), with acts performing on the street and inside The Coach and Horses, Banbury Cross Inn and The Apothecary Tap.

Organisers of the event estimate that between 3,500 and 4,000 people attended over the weekend, with the majority visiting on Saturday night.

Pride committee chair Tom Staples said: “Banbury’s first Pride was even better than we dreamed. I am still on a high and feel quite emotional about it.

"For years, lots of people have tried and finally, Banbury had its first Pride. I can’t believe we put this together in just six weeks. Thanks to my fellow committee members and volunteers, security and the acts over the weekend.

“The committee and I were so happy to see it was a whole community event; just what we aimed for, families, young and old all came out to celebrate!"

Many local businesses and organisations were involved in sponsoring the event, including the Banbury Chambers of Commerce, Abigail's Crafty Creations and Beat Fitness.

The organisers of Banbury Pride have already started planning for next year’s event, which they say will be ‘bigger and better’.

Tom said: “If it can be this good in a short period to prepare, 2025 Pride will be so much bigger and better; we are already planning it! So if you are interested in sponsoring us or have ideas, please get in touch.

“The drag queens, face painters, fire engines, police, stall holders and musicians all made it a fabulous weekend. Several people told us it was their first pride event, and the committee were so happy to hear it. That’s why it’s important to have one locally. Before, people would have to travel to cities to attend one.

“On Tuesday, we had our first meeting to get the ball rolling for next year. We've got lots of plans for bigger acts and more entertainment, and we will need to raise the money to pay for it. Thank you to Banbury for welcoming and celebrating Pride with us.”

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