First UK Leatherpride

By Phil S'Berg

The first ever dedicated weekend for leather men in the form of UK Leather Pride is set to be staged in Bristol, the UK's Western capital, in November.

In the past three years, the leather community has witnessed Bristol emerge as a centre for leather men, with the establishment of the LeatherWest (the first ever gay leather non-profit Community Interest Company), regular events throughout the year, BLUF Bristol and the Bristol Leather Weekend last year.

The organising team behind UK Leather Pride say, "The UK needed a Leather Pride. It needed a home. We looked around and Bristol was chosen because of the lower costs to organise the weekend, cheaper hotels and an availability of venues close to each other and the availability of a large volunteer base to ensure the weekend festival could be staged. We have taken inspiration from Belgium Leather Pride in Antwerpen and using this event as the model for the UK."

The weekend events will be hosted in the city's Old Market Quarter, with events taking place over three days in a range of venues all very close to each other and a few minuets walk from the official host hotel, Future Inns. The centre of the city is just a few minutes walk away with a wealth of things to visit and see.

UK Leather Pride is starting small and 'home grown' and will, say the organisers, build with solid steps to grow in future years. "We're starting an exciting journey to build something special in the quirky city of Bristol, this is after all, the home of Banksy! We want leather men to come and join us on this journey to build something special by being there right at the very start."

"This is the first UK Leather Pride weekend. It will be smaller than other Leather Prides such as Belgium (Antwerpen), Amsterdam and Folsom Europe. Nevertheless, the offer is going to be different: it will be more human scale, smaller venues close to one another, bar hoping, event hoping, cosy, intimate and a great balance of the social and the play".

So, guys going to UK Leather Pride can expect a very social and cultural weekend, with photographers organising pop-up studios, 'Leather Comedy', workshops, cigar socials, lunch and dinner events, art and book markets and Leather 'speed dating', all organised to get leather men meeting and talking with each other....."that's always the best way to meet men", adds S'Berg.

UK Leather Pride is building on the success of last year's Bristol Leather Weekend. By all accounts it was a great success judging by the comments seen on Facebook and Twitter as well as cover in Cerebral Magazine by Leather Colts. This will be a leather event to watch this year and future years.

UK Leather Pride: Bristol, November 6th-8th