A WIDE variety of acts and entertainment culminating in a street party will mark the triumphant return next month of Skipton Pride.

Set to take place from Thursday, July 6 to Sunday July 9, Skipton Pride promises to be a vibrant and family-friendly event that embraces the spirit of diversity, equality, community, love and friendship.

Last year's Pride in the Park, in Aireville Park, which was funded with a one-off Lottery grant, will be replaced with a Pride Street Party in the public space behind the town hall, and will include entertainment, food and drink, and a variety of stalls.

Also taking place over the four day festival will be comedy and music at the town hall, including Choriza May, star of RuPaul’s Drag Race, and Amanda Lovett from the BBC hit show, The Traitors. Also taking to the stage will be Craven College performance arts students - who also appeared at last year's Pride in the Park.

Organised by the North Yorkshire Council cultural services team at Skipton Town Hall in collaboration with Skipton Town Council, Skipton BID, Skipton Library, North Yorkshire Youth Voice, SELFA Children's Charity, Craven College, and North Yorkshire Youth Charity, the four-day celebration aims to create a welcoming and inclusive atmosphere for everyone.

Celebrations begin on Thursday, July 6, with Drag Queen Story Hour UK at Skipton Library. Also on Thursday is an opportunity to see “Confetti” - a comedy theatre show from the award-winning Quick Duck Theatre.

Will Jackson, star of 'Yours Sincerely' returns to Skipton with his new Edinburgh Fringe smash hit. Unashamedly queer, Confetti is a celebration of the gay best friend – often sidelined in traditional rom-coms, Felix is the star of this show, wearing his heart on his sleeve and keeping the party going.

On Friday, people can get involved with a family story time and craft activity at Skipton Library, and for the grown-ups only there will be a special Pride edition of Skipton Comedy Live at the town hall, featuring four top-class LGBTQIA+ comedians.

Running the show will be Ada Campe, whose witty observations and impeccable timing never fail to leave audiences in stitches. With her larger-than-life personality and razor-sharp wit, Ada brings a unique perspective to the comedy scene.

The Saturday promises more interactive and engaging events with Skipton Library hosting a Lego Club and a zine-making workshop, while the town hall, Craven Museum will offer “Pride Make and Take” free family crafts where children will have the chance to make some brightly coloured garlands and flags to wave at the Pride street party or to display at home.

And on the Sunday, the Pride Street Party promises an assortment of food, drink, and shopping opportunities, with a range of community stalls to explore.

Indoor and outdoor entertainment and activities, sponsored by Albion Place retail hub, will be provided. It will be held at the Skipton Town Hall complex, which includes Jerry Croft, Albion Place Amphitheatre - which was recently the setting of a communal reading of Homer's Odyssey organised by Skipton Civic Society, with additional activity taking place at Skipton Library.

North Yorkshire Council’s executive member for culture, arts and housing, Cllr Simon Myers, said: “The Skipton Pride celebration is a reflection of North Yorkshire community's commitment to inclusivity and acceptance.

“We are thrilled to bring Pride to Skipton, giving access to rural communities. Skipton Pride presents a unique opportunity for visitors to experience the rich cultural heritage and warm hospitality of the town, while also championing the values of acceptance and equality.

“I hope as many people as possible come along and take part in this year’s celebrations of love, friendship and unity.”

The Pride Street Party day begins with a “Get Ready for pride” event for young people at the Town Hall. Glitter and face paints will be provided for those who would like to use them.

Free entertainment will include a headline performance from Choriza May, star of RuPaul’s Drag Race, as well as Amanda Lovett from the BBC hit show, The Traitors, electro pop duo Neon Town, Connor Fisher, Craven College Performing Arts students, Fifth Apollo, Skipton Ukulele Club, Alannah Rose, FusionXtreme, and DJ Michael Upson. There will be outdoor entertainment throughout the day including The Big Gay Disco Bike.

Activities include a Yarndale Pride Workshop in the Town Hall education room, rapping workshops at Albion Place Amphitheatre, a ‘Youth Pride, Loudly Proud!’ workshop and a ‘Create and Animate’ workshop at the library, delivered by North Yorkshire Youth Voice.

In addition, there will be plenty of community stalls including Craven Youth Council, SELFA Children’s Charity, North Yorkshire Youth, Skipton Step Into Action, Exclusively Inclusive, North Yorkshire Fire, YorSexual Health, North Yorkshire Together, Samaritans, Bradford and District Community Empowerment Network, Craven Mental health Support Team, Healthwatch North Yorkshire, and IDAS.

For event tickets and further information about Skipton Pride, visit www.skiptontownhall.co.uk