2nd Annual Pride Week 🌈

If you were at Edge Hill University last week, you might have noticed that it was Pride week. How would you have known, you ask? Why the main building being lit up in true rainbow fashion, of course! A great show of solidarity from the university, and with their continued support of all gender toilets and inclusivity it’s not without merit.

Last year was the first ever Pride week at Edge Hill University, before that, the LGBT+ students had usually headed over to Preston for their annual Pride event, lacking anything closer to home. This year saw the return of the pronoun workshop on Monday, a short educational event on how to ask someone’s pronouns and pronouns outside the binary of him/her. Also on Monday was the Student Union Bar quiz, featuring a bonus pride round.

Tuesday was a day for sports and societies to show their support for the LGBT community, with the Pride in Sport and Societies workshop on in the afternoon just before the BUCS sports teams signed the 2018 Pride Pledge, at the Team Edge Hill Forum. The BUCS teams all wore rainbow laces during their Wednesday games, making a visual statement of support to go alongside their signings the day before. Pride Social also saw a return in 2018 on Wednesday evening at Venue, with confetti cannons and rainbow face paint to boot.

On Thursday evening in the Hub, banners were made alongside the film, Pride, being played upstairs – right by the flags hanging proudly from the bridge to the SU Offices. This was of course in preparation for the Pride March that occurred on Friday at midday. Also on Friday, starting at 7pm, was the SU Drag Race, being presented and judged by Manchester’s own, Miss Blair.

Fear not if you missed the events of Pride Week, for, on March 15th, Venue is hosting “Milk”, the North West’s NEWEST LGBT+ Clubnight that promises drag acts and stilt walkers. Open not just to students but to all members of the LGBT+ community and friends.

Our First Pride Week! 🌈

As you may or may not have known, last week was Edge Hill’s first ever Pride week! I mentioned this last Wednesday on my previous post, but since then, the whole week has been and gone. The LGBT officer of the Edge Hill Student’s Union, Molly Houghton, has done a great job sorting out Pride week, and the SU have backed it up.

The rainbow on the Pride flag has a lot of symbolism behind it – each colour stripe has a different meaning. Each weekday was attributed a different colour, with Friday taking both indigo and violet.

Monday was Red, representing Life. To start off the week, the Bye Bye Bi-Erasure stall was run in the Hub to reduce the stigma surrounding bisexuality – which has long been subject to erasure and myths that bisexual people are “just greedy.” The stall featured a board dealing with what bi-erasure is, and a little game that asked you to guess famous celebrities sexualities, revealing that many who people assume are gay or straight are bisexual! (For example, Freddie Mercury, Drew Barrymore, Billie Joe Armstrong).

Tuesday was Orange, representing Healing. Another stall in the Hub was run, for LGBT+ Mental Health. As well as a Pronoun Workshop, run by the LGBT+ Society itself. The Mental Health Stall had a fun game to test your flag knowledge, to test if you know the most common LGBT+ flags and what gender identity/sexuality they represent (these were also the flags hanging from the stairs by the Student’s Union in the Hub). It also had a fact/myth board full of statements regarding mental health in LGBT+ individuals.  Later that day, in the lecture theatre in the tech hub, the LGBT+ Society ran a pronoun workshop that explained the relationship between gender and pronouns. The most common of which being he, she, and they.

Yellow was attributed to Wednesday, to represent Sunlight. On this day, Molly hosted sunflower planting outside the Hub! Anyone could come along and test out their green-fingers and try out some therapeutic gardening. Of course Wednesday is also the night of Social, which the SU made Pride-themed also.

On Thursday, the theme was Nature – owing itself to the colour Green. On the evening of this day, a sexual health workshop was run by Action For Trans Health. This workshop was run by trans people themselves, and really provided some key knowledge that isn’t taught in standard Sex Ed.

As mentioned earlier, Friday was host to two colours, indigo and violet – meaning it hosted the themes of Harmony and Spirit. This day hosted the first ever Pride March! A sense of solidarity was had by all as we marched with flags and chants around the university campus, finishing at the SU Bar, where some of us stayed for food and drinks. Later on that evening, Free Film Friday also presented a film relevant to the LGBT+ community – Rent. Although I had seen the recorded stage production before, I had never seen the film version, and it is both a heart-wrenching and heart-warming experience. Overall, the week was a successful first time for the university, and I hope to see the week expanding and improving as time goes by.