It seems that London is too busy funding the Jubilee and Olympics to want to bother with a bunch of queers and their floats this Saturday.
As has been made clear in statement from the Pride London website, they simply haven't been able to raise enough money or sponsorship to be able to fund an event on the scale of previous years:
Each and every year, Pride London needs to achieve some serious commercial targets to fund the event - and this year, targets are even higher than before, because of increased cost, the sheer scale of the planned event and mounting pressure to deliver a "world class" event. To a backdrop of a more difficult economic climate and tough sponsorship calls considering everything that is happening in London this year, fundraising from both corporates and from within the community has been more challenging than ever. Despite creating a strong sponsorship base for this year's planned event, there is, in the week leading up to the 7th of July, still a shortfall.
As a result, we are returning to the roots of the original Pride London rallies. The 'parade' as we know it will now be a procession. It will cover the same route as planned, but with the exception that there will be no vehicles or floats participating. The procession will commence at an earlier time of 11am instead of the scheduled 1pm kick-off.
The celebrations in Trafalgar Square are expected to proceed, but with some changes to the programme, including an earlier start and finish time.
There will be no official World Pride events in Soho.
It is a real shame that the planned party has had to be downscaled - and even more embarrassing given that this year Pride London is hosting the 'World Pride' title.
Pride weekend normally has such an incredible carnival atmosphere that spills over into the rest of the capitol, so it will be a great shame that the day is reduced to a small march and a closed party in Trafalgar. There have even been additional warnings from the Met that any partying or drinking in the streets of Soho will be cracked down upon.
When the nation is celebrating in so many other ways, it does feel a little like Pride is being told "we'd rather you kept it a little quiet, boys, so as not to scare the tourists..."
Nevertheless, Handler and i and a bunch of sexy BLUF guys and pups and a whole load of other perverts are still planning to go and march and do our stuff - so here's hoping that we'll manage to make it a Pride to remember, with or without sponsorship or approval from big name brands.
Now all we need is for the British weather to play along too....