Somerset councils proud to fly Pride flag
- Credit: North Somerset Council
North Somerset Council, the Weston-super-Mare Pride team and North Somerset LGBT+ Forum joined together to raise the rainbow flag over the Town Hall in Weston yesterday (Wednesday).
Flying the flag from the landmark civic building demonstrates support and solidarity for the LGBTQ+ community and the organisations' commitment to everyone who lives, works and visits North Somerset that they stand for equality and fairness for all.
The flag will remain in place over the weekend while the Weston-super-Mare Pride Team hosts its annual celebrations online.
Mendip District Council also showed support for the district’s LGBTQ+ community by proudly flying the rainbow flag from its offices in Shepton Mallet this week.
With the colours representing the LGBTQ+ community collectively, each colour of the rainbow flag has a specific meaning: red – life, orange – healing, yellow – sunlight, green – nature, blue – harmony, and purple – spirit.
First flown in the 1970s as a symbol of pride for the gay community, the rainbow or Pride flag has become an important symbol that aims to celebrate inclusivity, diversity and unity.
Cllr Mike Bell, deputy leader of North Somerset Council said: "We are committed to equality and fairness for everyone, so flying the Pride flag from the Town Hall sends a strong signal to the local community that we celebrate diversity and recognise the richness that it brings.
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“We are very supportive of the work that the Weston Pride Team and North Somerset LGBT+ Forum do to reduce isolation, tackle discrimination and promote community engagement and cohesion.
Nigel Briers, speaking on behalf of the directors of Weston-super-Mare Pride CIC, said: "Weston-super-Mare Pride is our annual event for the LGBTQ+ community to become visible in the locality and celebrate equality and diversity.
“The raising of the Pride flag with North Somerset Council shows the support and commitment of the officers and councillors within our community and carries a message from them that North Somerset is welcoming of all communities and cultures."
Steve Winter-Gray, chair of the North Somerset LGBT+ Forum, said: "After what has been a very challenging year for so many people, the words solidarity, inclusion, acceptance, and hope which are so beautifully represented by the Rainbow Pride flag seem perfectly fitting to help us move forwards."
For more information about the work of the forum, including a range of support groups, log on to https://www.nslgbtforum.com/.
For more information about Weston-super-Mare Pride, and the planned series of online events for Saturday, log on to www.wsmpride.com.