Brighton Pride festivities been cancelled for the second year running due to concerns over mass gatherings.
Organisers say they are “heartbroken” by the news, which comes despite the rollout of coronavirus vaccines.
The event normally brings thousands of people to the East Sussex city, with around 300,000 attending in 2019.
The usual parade, party and festival had been scheduled to take place on August 7 and 8 this summer, but organisers said there are “uncertainties that need to be resolved to safely deliver mass gatherings”.
Paul Kemp, director of Brighton Pride, said: “We are devastated at having to make this decision for a second year and recognise the huge impact on local businesses, charities and community groups who rely on the fundraising potential of the Pride weekend.
“Pride attracts tens of thousands of people to our city for the LGBTQ+ community parade which is the heart of the Pride celebrations, where social distancing clearly can’t be facilitated safely.”
Mr Kemp said other challenges made it “impossible to deliver a safe event with any certainty”.
He added: “I’d like to thank all of our contractors, suppliers and partner agencies who have tried their upmost to help us move forward with planning, and to everyone who has purchased a ticket, for their understanding and support, we can’t wait to bring Pride back in 2022 better than ever.”
Smaller community and pop-up cultural events are still planned throughout the summer and autumn as part of a cultural programme that can run within Covid-safe guidelines, organisers said, as well as online events.
Nick Hibberd, Brighton & Hove City Council’s executive director for economy, environment and culture, said: “Keeping everyone safe and Covid rates low remains our priority and, with that in mind, we fully support the decision.
“We will continue working with Pride to support the smaller events arranged this year and help manage a safe city over the traditional Pride weekend at the beginning of August.
“We look forward to working together next year to make sure our city’s full Pride celebrations can return better than ever.”