Over 1,000 march for equality at Pride

Thousands of people lined the streets of the city centre on Saturday to cheer on participants in one of the largest Pride parades ever staged in the city.

Around 1,000 people participated in the march, which followed the traditional Civil Rights route from the Waterside Railway Station over Craigavon Bridge and up through the city centre into Guildhall Square.

Mayor of Derry & Strabane Councillor Maolíosa McHugh joined members of the Foyle Pride Committee and young people at the helm of the march on Saturday afternoon.

As in previous years, there was a small protest set up by a religious group adjacent to the meeting point.

Meanwhile participants, many of them draped in the rainbow flag and carrying flags and banners calling for marriage equality and end to homophobia and transphobia, travelled in their droves from across the north west and from Belfast and beyond to be part of the festival finale.

The rain held off for the duration of the parade and the large attendance ensured there was no shortage of helping hands to carry the massive rainbow flag at the tail end of the procession.

There were chants of ‘What do we want? Equality. When do we want it? Now’ and ‘Who’s Rainbow? Our Rainbow’ during the parade, the latter in connection with comments made by a local pastor recently, calling on Christians to take back the rainbow.

Political representatives including a large contingent from both Sinn Fein and the SDLP were in attendance at the event, alongside others from People Before Profit and the Green Party.

The music was already in full swing as the parade arrived at Guildhall Square to be greeted with the flashes and phones of waiting professional and amateur photographers and videographers. And across from the main stage there were face painting and amusements for the younger revellers, ensuring no-one was left out of the festivities.