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Doubling up on Pride

GCA launches call for marchers in London and Manchester – and sponsors please!

 

Let’s get loud and proud for the greeting card industry as the official launch of the GCA’s involvement in not one but two Pride events is announced.

Anyone who wants to march in either the Pride In London event or Manchester Pride can now sign up via the association’s website – and Mark Callaby, Ohh Deer co-founder and the GCA council lead on diversity and inclusion, is also looking for sponsors to help cover the costs of attending.

Above: This year’s GCA Pride logo
Above: This year’s GCA Pride logo

The GCA has 75 places for London, on Saturday, 29 June, and 50 in Manchester two months later on Saturday 24 August – there’s no cap on how many places companies can sign up for this year so Mark said: “Early sign-up is encouraged!”

After the fabulous success of the 2023 event in London where 10,000 cards generously donated by the industry were handed out before the GCA’s 50 marchers had even covered a quarter of the mile-long route, Mark added: “We won’t be asking for greeting card samples this year, instead we’ll be printing our own cards which we hope will increase the amount of cards we can hand out along the route.”

Ricicle Cards owner David Rice-Nicholls is stepping up again to help with the organisation and commented: “Being able to combine the two things I love the most – my queer identity and greeting cards – was an absolute dream.

“Celebrating all types of love and inclusivity, at the same time representing the GCA and our fellow publishers by handing out cards to beaming smiles in the crowds was incredible! I can’t wait to do it all again this summer!”

Above: Mark (right) and David are busy with the organisation for two Pride marches
Above: Mark (right) and David are busy with the organisation for two Pride marches

The Imaging Centre has offered to take on the card printing for this year, with the board and envelope sponsor still being sought. Mark would love to hear from anyone interesting in getting involved – email him at mark@ohhdeer.com – and there are five other levels, ranging from a £20 donation to the £500 and £1,000 headline sponsors, where the brand name will be included on the card being handed out.

Some parade tickets will be held back for the organising committee and relevant sponsors then, once all places are allocated, a waiting list will in operation.

Sponsorship covers the costs of organising and taking part in the event only, any accommodation and travel costs incurred will be the individual’s responsibility.

To sign up to take part in the parades click here, successful applicants will be notified nearer the time and invited to attend an online briefing session. Everyone will be expected to hold placards and banners and distribute the greeting cards as well as dress for the occasion, although some t-shirts and accessories will be available.

Above: As 10,000 greeting cards wasn’t nearly enough at the 2023 Pride In London, the aim is to print plenty for this year’s events
Above: As 10,000 greeting cards wasn’t nearly enough at the 2023 Pride In London, the aim is to print plenty for this year’s events

Mark reminded people that the rules mean participants will be promoting the GCA and the thriving greetings industry, they can’t self-promote their own business or another company during the parade.

And he added: “All the information is on the blog where people can sign up to march with us for either Pride event or both, and also sign up to be an official sponsor for this year’s event.

“Pride in London last year was one of the best days of my life. The streets in London were filled with so much love and support and our GCA walking group were full of energy and excitement. I can’t wait to do it all again this year in both London and Manchester.”

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