Hussain Bayoomi, managing director of the Hereford Times, introduces our coverage of Pride Month and explains why we think it important to celebrate

PRIDE is a movement that celebrates sexual diversity within the LGBTQ+ community.

It is an opportunity throughout the month of June each year to raise awareness by promoting dignity, equality, and self-affirmation from within the LGBTQ+ community, highlighting the issues that people from this minority group face.

2022 is a particularly significant year for the Pride movement and LGBTQ+ community as we commemorate 50 years since the first Pride parade took place in the UK – our very own golden jubilee if you like!


The LGBTQ+ community celebrates Pride in many ways, and this year with outdoor events once again taking place we have an extra reason to wave our flags – Pride can resume its colourful celebration in full swing.

Pride month is a global celebration, and across the UK various events will mark the occasion and recognise the contributions made by the members of the LGBTQ+ community and the influence they have had around the world.

You may be wondering why we celebrate Pride during June. This is because it was in June 1969 that the Stonewall riots took place in New York – when homosexuality was illegal in most US states and police often raided gay bars. This historical event is recognised as the beginning of the movement that spearheaded change and continues to make way for equality.

Hereford Times: Hereford Times managing director Hussain BayoomiHereford Times managing director Hussain Bayoomi

And it was not long ago at all that the UK decriminalised homosexuality either. England and Wales were first to change the law in 1967, while Scotland and Northern Ireland changed their laws in 1980 and 1982 respectively.

Same-sex couples had no legal recognition until 2005 when civil partnerships were introduced, and same-sex marriages only existed in the UK from 2014 – less than 10 years ago.

But Pride month is not just about celebration, it is also an opportunity to peacefully protest and raise political awareness of the current issues facing the LGBTQ+ community.

It is a way to lobby MPs and local government representatives to ensure they understand the challenges faced by the LGBTQ+ community and to get them to do something about it.

The parades, however, are an important part and a prominent feature of the month. They are key to visibility across the globe and raising awareness.

Street parties and festivals, community events, publics speaking and educational sessions also take place throughout the month, grabbing media attention and attracting millions of people across the world to participate in the celebrations.

Here is Herefordshire, Hereford Pride is being held at the city racecourse on Saturday, June 18, and our journalists will, of course, be reporting on the event.

While we have come a long way in changing attitudes and becoming more inclusive, prejudices haven’t been eradicated and perceptions still need to change. Positive representation is important, be it from within our mainstream media or having visible positive role models that will continue to drive change.

Times have definitely changed for the better since the 1960s, but we still have a long way to go.

Wishing you all a happy and safe Pride month.