By Richard Fleury
Faversham's first-ever Pride parade brought a splash of fabulousness to the town, with hundreds turning out to support Swale's LGBTQ+ community.
“There were so many people on the street cheering, families and people from all walks of life!” said Shane Horton, who led the parade with Mayor Alison Reynolds.
“I was carrying the Swale Pride flag next to the Mayor and her family. They were lovely but because of the wind I nearly knocked her out a couple of times!,” said Shane, the general manager of The Corner Tap pub who helped organise the event with Swale Pride.
Swale Pride has run two previous events at West Faversham Community Centre. But this year, its first Faversham parade, from the Corner Tap in Preston Street to the Guildhall and back, was followed by a free festival at the Faversham Town FC football ground for 800 people.
Acts included X-Factor finalist Sam Callahan but 17-year-old Faversham singer Kyle Steele stole the show. “He had such a beautiful voice, everybody thought he was adorable,” said Shane. “The music cut off at one point and he just carried on singing acapella. They loved him.”
Pride will return to Faversham but meanwhile Shane hopes to work with Swale Pride on pop-up events in the area. “I love Faversham and everything I do here I want it to be fabulous – bigger and better! Lots of gay people live in the area but everybody's a little bit closed off. You've got 10,000 new people coming into the town and some of them will be gay, so it's important that everyone feels welcome.”
Get in touch with Swale Pride to learn more about their work and how you can get involved: firstname.lastname@example.org