Community News

Plans progress for Pride on the Isle of Wight

Besi Besemar March 13, 2017

Plans to stage a Pride on the Isle of Wight on July 15 came a step nearer following two announcements last week.

The Pride committee are organising the Rainbow Gala Dinner, a fundraising evening of live performances accompanied by a sumptuous three course dinner, all in the newly refurbished surroundings of the Royal Esplanade Hotel in Ryde. Dress to impress with colourful ties and dresses.

Miss Jason
Miss Jason

The Island will be welcoming back Miss Jason, who many on the Island will remember from the Isle Of Wight Gay Men’s Chorus summer concert in Summer 2016.

She will be hosting the event and will be joined during the evening by ARTivist, Kat Kai Kol-Kes. Kat is Botswana’s first openly trans identifying public figure. She is a professionally trained singer and award-winning solo artist.

Completing the line-up of international performers is harpist Cormac De Barra from Dublin. Cormac has extensive experience as a performer, but is most recognised for touring with Hazel O’Connor since 1998 and will be bringing his own Irish Harp from Dublin with him.

Kat Kai Kol-Kes
Kat Kai Kol-Kes

Event organiser Matt Bundy, said: “Although I’ve arranged this event, I was one of the first to buy my tickets. I can’t wait to attend and its going to be a highlight of the year!

We hope to raise lots of much-needed funds to help stage IWPride, whilst also having a great evening of food and entertainment with friends, old and new!

With the price being just 40 pounds per ticket, people who may be attending by themselves will not be left out in the cold but will be able to join in the fun!”

The second announcement by IWPride concerned the booking of traders and stalls for the main event on July 15.

Cormac De Barra
Cormac De Barra

Market organiser Lewis Wheeler, said: “With two stages hosting a wide variety of top-quality national and local musicians, speakers and performers, a parade down Union Street and a ticketed party at The Balcony in Ryde in the evening we know that this is going to be a fantastic event for the Island.”

He continued: “At the heart of the event is the ‘Pride Village’ which will host the acoustic stage, a cocktail bar, trade and information exhibitors, Wellbeing and Family Zones and the Catering Zone.”

As an exhibitor or trader at the event you will have the opportunity to showcase your organisation at an event that has equality, respect and love as its core values. Through your association with IW Pride you will demonstrate to the Island that your organisation holds these values and that your doors are open and welcoming to all.”

There is an early bird discount available for all traders and those interested in having a stall at the event, who register by April 15 2017, so make sure you get in touch with Lewis.

To contact Lewis email:

Event: Rainbow Gala Dinner

Where: Royal Esplanade Hotel, 16 Esplanade, Ryde PO33 2ED

When: Thursday, April 27

Time: 7.30pm

Cost: Tickets £40 per person

To book online, click here: