CultureDale event inspires you to ‘be here, be you, be proud!’

This Pride month, and beyond, Calderdale Council is highlighting how important it is to be yourself, no matter how you identify, and to embrace diversity.  

This is a central theme of Calderdale’s Year of Culture (CultureDale(external link)). With a commitment to inclusivity, the 12-month programme of events and activities ensures everyone can take part in, contribute to and enjoy cultural experiences.

Pride month is about acceptance, equality, celebrating the work of LGBTQIA+ people, education in LGBTQIA+ history and raising awareness of issues affecting the LGBTQIA+ community.

The Council is flying the Pride flag at Halifax Town Hall and hosting special book displays in libraries to mark Pride month.

Happy Valley Pride is one of the local organisations that the Council has commissioned to deliver big projects and events as part of CultureDale.

The charity has a mission to celebrate LGBTQIA+ life in Hebden Bridge and surrounding areas, and is for people of all ages, sexualities, genders, ethnicities and abilities. It promotes equality and diversity to eradicate discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, through arts, education and engagement.

Happy Valley Pride’s Big Day Out in Calder Holmes Park, Hebden Bridge, on Saturday 27 July 2024 (11am – 6pm) is part of the CultureDale events programme and the annual seven-day Happy Valley Pride Festival, which runs from Monday 22 to Sunday 28 July.

The Big Day Out is a free, inclusive, family-friendly community extravaganza featuring a great line-up of local LGBTQIA+ performers alongside national and international artists. This year’s headliner is RuPaul’s Drag Race 2023 winner, Ginger Johnson, who will be joined by co-star Kate Butch. Expect singers, speakers, DJs, a craft stall from Handmade Parade, face painters, activities for children, an info-hub, food and drink stalls and the legendary pink pooch dog parade!

The rest of the Happy Valley Pride Festival is sure to be a spectacle too, with the Big Bingo Show back up north to open the week with a blast, and a week of some of the UK’s biggest queer talent, including Suzi Ruffell, Cheddar Gorgeous and the Tiger Lillies and David Hoyle. Workshops, talks and teatime discos will also keep people entertained.

For more information about the Happy Valley Pride CultureDale event and what the organisation does throughout the year, head to link)

Tim Whitehead, Artistic Director at Happy Valley Pride, said:

“This year we are so very proud to present our ninth festival for our amazing community and allies in the Calder Valley. We’re going into Happy Valley Pride ‘24 on the back of the best audience feedback we’ve ever had, winning the Arts and Culture Award at the Calderdale Spirit Awards and being one of Calderdale Council’s Year of Culture Key Commissions.

“At Happy Valley Pride it doesn’t matter where you are from: everyone is welcome. Come down and make new friends, soak in the valley air and get lost in our very own queertopia.”

Ian Day, Calderdale Council’s Director of Public Services, said:

“Pride is all about being proud of who you are, no matter how you identify or who you love. Supporting LGBTQIA+ people, and all our diverse communities, is a year-round commitment for us – we want to make Calderdale a place where you can be your true self and where inequalities are reduced. 

“It’s important to us that the CultureDale events are for and by local people, and we’re delighted to be working with Happy Valley Pride who share that ethos. This Pride month, we’re looking ahead to the spectacular July events that will show off Calderdale’s distinctive culture for everyone to enjoy.”

In support of the Vision 2024 for Calderdale, the Council wants kindness to thrive in all parts of the borough, and everyone’s voices to be heard. Calderdale reached its 50th anniversary on 1 April 2024. This is the ultimate year for the Vision 2024 for Calderdale. Find out more about it here:

The Year of Culture (CultureDale) programme features locally-created events, festivals, exhibitions, performances and initiatives for everyone to enjoy from April 2024 to April 2025. It is funded by Calderdale Council, the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, Arts Council England, National Lottery Heritage Fund and UK Shared Prosperity Fund. Be inspired: link)

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