Belfast Pride 1991

The first Pride in Belfast

This collection shows some of the photographs of Belfast Pride June 1991 taken by David McFarlane.They are held in PRONI as part of the PA MagLochlainn Papers (PRONI ref D4779/8/1).

“The First Belfast Pride was suggested at an NIGRA meeting on 16 May 1991.This Belfast Pride was organised in 6 weeks for June 1991. Depending on who you speak to approximately 50-150 people were on the first Belfast Pride. The key organisers for this Belfast Pride were: D Arthur, P A MagLochlainn, Terry McFarlane, Tom McAlister, Brian Mulcahy, Anne Ross, Andrew Wakefield, Sean McGouran, Jeff Dudgeon, Niall Gillespie, Michael Elston, D F, Martin Hewson, Greg Jackson, Geoffrey Browne, Warren Corbett, Bob Davidson, Thomas Moffatt, Donal Savage, Tim Clarke, John Cross, Pamela Sweeney, Barbara Ward (not a definitive list). Sean McGouran coined the phrase that it was a ‘dander’, not a march, on a route agreed with the RUC. 

The first march took a lot of courage, to set out on something that had never been done before, and to allow people to see you as a person representing the LGBTQIA+ community. Each year Belfast Pride has grown, and the people of Northern Ireland have become more open and supportive of the LGBTQIA+ community. The ‘dander’ has now spread to different parts of the 6 counties, and we continue to have members who travel to other Prides throughout the world.”

David McFarlane, photographer

In this clip from NVTV Tina McComb, Shannon Sickles and David Grant talk about the first Pride parade in Belfast.

David McFarlane's photographs are courtesy of Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, P A MagLochlainn Papers (PRONI ref D4779/8/1). For permission to publish requests for these images, please contact PRONI at access@communities-ni.gov.uk

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