Isle of Wight’s first Pride event receives unexpected support

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The Isle of Wight’s first Pride festival is set to go ahead next month ahead of the suspension of the homophobic local MP. Andrew Turner was forced to scrap his re-election bid back in April after serving as the Isle of Wight’s MP for 16 years. The politician had told told school students that homosexuality is “dangerous to society” during a discussion about plans for the island’s first Pride event related to the music fest taking place there. Festival organiser John Giddings said: “When people make comments from a position of responsibility, it can reflect badly on our whole community on the Island. My experiences on the Island are different and I want to reverse the negative view and through the Festival, let the Island community show the rest of the UK that we do embrace diversity here, everybody is welcome on the Island irrespective of who they are or who they love and that LoveWins.” A release said: “Isle of Wight Pride takes place in Ryde on 15th July, starting with a parade through the town at 11am and leading to a large free event on Harbour Beach. Ticket registration is essential and over 1000 tickets have already been snapped up, so make sure you register and don’t miss out. Visit our website www.IWPride.org for further details and to register for tickets.” The announcement faced mixed reaction and alongside the extremely supportive locals theere were homophobic columnists asking LGBT people to ‘shut up’.

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