AN ESTIMATED crowd of 7000 people marched through Glasgow city centre to celebrate LGBT rights yesterday.

The Glasgow Mardi Gla Pride march organised by the LGBT Co-op walked through the city from Kelvingrove to George Square.

Representatives from more than 70 groups took part, including political parties, global banking companies such as Morgan Stanley and Santander, Glasgow LGBT+ Inter-faith Network groups, the Terrence Higgins Trust and LGBT+ groups such as Out for Indy, the Asexual Visibility and Education Network and Lesbian Lovers.

The National:

Speakers at the rally included Will Labate, the chairman of the LGBT Co-op, Stuart McDonald SNP MP, Jo Swinson MP and Shettleston Cllr Thomas Kerr.

Celebrations continued at the Strathclyde Student Union – which served as the Mardi Glam hub for the day – where various musicians and speakers played at numerous venues across the city.

The sun was shining as thousands of marchers waived rainbow flags to match the one flying over the City Chambers in Glasgow yesterday. Rainbow confetti blew through the streets as the sounds of whistles and drums, chants and cheers filled the air.

“We’re here to celebrate,” said Joseph McCluskey, who spent four hours painting himself and his friend, Jon Fowlie, to march in the crowd.

The National:

“Pride isn’t over; it is accepted now to be gay but there are other parts of the community that aren’t accepted easily, and the fight is on for them. We’ve come a long way in the last 50 years but there is still a way to go. The atmosphere is so amazing; it just brings the whole city together.”

“The atmosphere is absolutely fantastic,’’ agreed Catriona, at the march with her partner. ‘‘It’s roasting hot, so happy, so friendly. I’m so happy to see people supporting trans issues and hopefully in Prides to come, this will be in an an independent Scotland.’’

While speakers acknowledged numerous times that the LGBT+ community had come a long way since the Stonewall uprising, there was a strong emphasis on the need for better rights for bisexual and particularly trans people.

Jo Swinson and Stewart McDonald acknowledged the calls for reform of the Gender Recognition Act.

The National:

A marcher, Vic Rodriguez, held a card that called for better accessibility for trans people. “There needs to be more accessible health care for trans people without all the red tape that comes around with it; and the things you have to prove about your identity which feels unnecessary.”

Jo Swinson MP, told the Sunday National: “This turnout for Glasgow Pride by Mardi Gla is amazing and shows the love in this city, the inclusion that we should rightly be proud of, but never complacent.

“There are so many rights which are not upheld, where people do not have equal treatment in this country and the world. The fight goes on."

Will Labate, chairman of the LGBT Co-op, said: “I think the most important message to take away that this is a free and inclusive Pride festival and we want everyone to get involved and be inspired to do good work and be a part of the community.’’