MALVERN Pride 2022 has seen hundreds of attendees at today's event in Priory Park.

The annual festival which celebrates the LGBTQ+ community is one of many local pride events across the UK.

Priory park is full of stalls, entertainment and brightly coloured attire in celebration of the festival.

Due to the pandemic, the festival has not been able to take place since 2019.

The festival kicked off at midday in Malvern, with the support of both the town and district councils and the mayor of Malvern, Cllr Nick Houghton.

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Cllr Houghton said: "As the mayor of Malvern I am very pleased the community has come out in support of this wonderful event.

"It is an event for the LGBTQ+ community but it's also a wonderful family event. We are trying to be as inclusive as possible, this is for all.

"The weather is holding out for us today which we are thankful for and we have lots of wonderful entertainment coming.

"We hope everyone here today enjoys themselves."

Malvern Gazette: Ellixia Q. Valentine and Cllr Nick Houghton.Ellixia Q. Valentine and Cllr Nick Houghton.

The event is being hosted by drag queen Ellixia Q. Valentine, who said how important local Pride events are to the LGBTQ+ community.

Ellixia said: "It's amazing to see such a great turnout. Local Pride's are just so important and is so welcomed after the pandemic.

"It is especially wonderful seeing so many young people here as well with Pride flags and makeup.

"I did not that have that when I was a kid and I am so happy the next generation gets to have this experience."

The festival also has all the different Pride flags around Priory park, with information about what they represent and the history behind them.

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Malvern Gazette: Malvern Pride 2022.Malvern Pride 2022.

Earlier this week, the pride flag was raised in Malvern to mark the start of preparations for the festival.

Along with the flags, which are flying throughout Malvern, a pair of rainbow benches have been installed in Priory Park to celebrate inclusion and diversity.

Both Malvern Town and Malvern Hills District Council have supported the festival financially, making it free to attend for all.

Market traders and shops in the town have also been exhibiting at the festival to show their support.

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