Thousands attend Gay Pride parade

Sat, Jun 23, 2007, 01:00

Members of Ireland's Gay and Lesbian communities take to the streets for the annual Gay Pride parade through Dublin city centre
Members of Ireland's Gay and Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans-gender communities take to the streets for the annual Gay Pride parade through Dublin city centre Photo: PA

Thousands of people thronged the streets of Dublin today as the Gay Pride parade made its way through the capital.

An explosion of colour will light up the city, marking the end of the Gay Pride festival 2007.

Shoppers enjoying the annual Gay Pride parade. Photo PA
Shoppers enjoying the annual Gay Pride parade. Photo PA

At 2.15pm Grand Marshal Senator David Norris led dancers, performers and a 500ft six-colour rainbow Gay Pride flag down O'Connell Street and Dame Street to the Civic Offices behind Christchurch for Pride Party In The Park.

The party, hosted by Miss Panti Bliss, features a host of familiar faces with performances by Shirley Temple Bar, Alternative Miss Ireland winner Joanna Ryde, and Stellar Sound.

Last year up to 6,000 people attended and took part in the parade, which marks the anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York, a significant turning point in the history of gay rights.

It was the city's biggest and most successful to date, attracting visitors from the UK, central Europe and the US.

The parade marks the end of two weeks of Gay Pride events, which celebrated the diversity and richness of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans-gender communities across Ireland.

The festival also highlights key issues such as civil partnership rights, anti-gay hate crimes and homophobic bullying in schools.