Thousands turn out for Aberdeen’s first Grampian Pride event

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Thousands have turned out with their rainbow flags to help celebrate the first inaugural Grampian Pride event in Aberdeen’s city centre today.

The parade, which began at 10.30am, went down the length of Union Street and was led by Aberdeen-born Hollyoaks actress Annie Wallace.

Wristband holders can also look forward to a day of festivities at the Grampian Pride Village at Queen’s Links at the beach, with all 5,000 available spaces for the free event sold out.

The event is being headlined by singer-songwriter Sandi Thom, who is from Banff.

Katherine Stark, 19, from Bucksburn, attended the event with her girlfriend Gemma Watson, 18, who lives in Inverness.

Katherine said: “I was surprised when I found out Aberdeen would be holding its own pride but was really pleased. It makes me very proud to be from Aberdeen today.”

Gemma added: “I think it’s brilliant. Inverness doesn’t have a Pride so to be able to go to this one instead is fantastic.

“It shows that progress is still being made. We don’t get any strange looks here and it feels very freeing.”

Barista Ben Caldicott, 39, from Woodside, has been an activist for years and said he was delighted to be at the event.

He said:  “I have done the Pride events in Edinburgh and Glasgow. It’s becoming more acceptable to be open about your sexuality.

“Unfortunately we have a long way to go but this event makes me very proud of Aberdeen.”