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The University and RUSU at Reading Pride 2019

colour photograph of rainbow flag

On Saturday 31 August 2019, the University of Reading took part in the Reading Pride celebrations!

Some of our staff and student volunteers met early in the morning to set up our stall at the marketplace – as you can see in the picture, it really looked wonderful!

At 11:00 our staff and student volunteers (and Sprocket, our LGBT+ staff network  mascot!) gathered at Broad Street Mall from where the parade started at 11:15.

We marched onto Oxford Road heading towards Metro Bank and crossed St Mary’s Butts into Broad Street. We then went all the way down Broad Street and turned left into Market Square and followed the road round to The Forbury where the parade went into Forbury Gardens. We then exited Forbury Gardens, crossed Forbury Road and headed under the railway line, right into Napier Road and then along the river to the Pride site entrance.

The rest of the day was spent at the marketplace where our stall was well-placed among various other stalls representing healthcare, local charities, political parties, commercial workplaces, and much more! There were a number of food and drink stalls and – of course – there was the main Stage as well as the amazing Pride aLive Stage, which featured fantastic local artists and bands (including some University staff and students!) who are either friends, allies and supporters of, or who identify themselves as, LGBT+. 

Our stall was very busy throughout the date and despite a sudden (thankfully short-lived!) storm, it continued to attract hundreds of people of all ages until the end (we were one of the last stalls to leave!). We were visited by some alumni and also some very excited freshers who were thrilled to see that we had such a large stall with so many enthusiastic and well-informed volunteers. Our rainbow freebies - shoelaces, rainbow flags, lanyards, stickers and our shiny new pronoun badges – were extremely popular: we have made a note to bring even more of them next year! It was really wonderful to see so many happy LGBT+ people and LGBT+ allies celebrating Pride together!

On behalf of the Co-Chairs of the LGBT+ staff network, Alina Tryfonidou and Allán Laville, we would like to thank all of our volunteers for ensuring the day went very well indeed. Thanks to your efforts, we gave out every single rainbow sticker, pronoun badge, lanyard, flag and shoe laces! We are looking forward to next year already!

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