officer blog


Welfare, Community & Diversity

Nathan Wyatt


Norwich Pride: Why it matters

Last week I had the pleasure of going to the 15th Norwich Pride – a day filled with exciting activities for all ages, centred around an hour-long march through the city centre! I’d never been to a pride before, and never felt that I really had a place there. Coming from a small town on the outskirts of Bedford, there wasn’t really an LGBTQ+ community big enough to hold a pride. Once I’d started at UEA I was more interested, but I was never on campus during the summer.   

After living in Norwich for three years I finally got to attend, and I now know what all the fuss is about! Walking through the precession showed the immense scale of support and friendship that this city can offer.  

You might be thinking to yourself, sure pride sounds fun, but does it really matter? Haven’t LGBTQ+ people got the same rights as everyone else now?  

Here’s some reasons why: 

  1. Bridge the divide – Pride has the power to unite those that might not usually connect. I was lucky enough to experience this, attending alongside the UEA Staff Network, where I met many new friendly faces that have connected me to my university even more. 
  2. There is power in numbers. Having a visual representation of a community and its allies clearly illustrates that not only are you not alone but surrounded by peers and supporters. 
  3. Pride is not a parade, but a protest. With the national media and mainstream political parties now frequently giving platforms to ‘gender-critical’ and transphobic voices, it is more important than ever that those who are able stand up for marginalised people, especially transgender people.  
  4. Community spirit. If you’re not part of the LGBTQ+ community, it can sometimes feel like an event that you’re excluded from. This is far from the truth! Whilst pride is first and foremost a political statement, it is also a great excuse to go and have fun with friends.  
  5. Relevance: So many of our ingrained cultural celebrations surround events that happened hundreds of years ago, or the royal family, or both! While these all have a place in our society, it’s great to have a day dedicated to celebrating one of the most seismic cultural shifts of the past century.  

Pride is important, but it’s also fun. It’s a great opportunity for members of the LGBTQ+ community and allies to come together and unite around common values – acceptance, understanding and friendship. Hopefully this has encouraged some of you to attend one of Norwich’s best events of the year, and you can experience the fun for yourself!