Hilton Liverpool, 26 September 2019
The brightest, bravest and best of the region’s LGBT+ community and our allies came together at the glittering inaugural LGBT+ awards ceremony – the LCR Pride Awards/
Over 600 nominations were received across 12 categories to find individuals, community groups or companies that are going that extra mile for the LGBT+ community.
Held at the stunning Hilton Liverpool City Centre the evening put the spotlight on those working to make the Liverpool City Region the most LGBT+ friendly during the last 12 months, from grass-roots campaigners, businesses and national work.
We were delighted when the one and only Danny Beard agreed to host the inaugural LCR Pride Awards. Danny first became known for winning Drag Idol UK in 2015, where he then went on to compete on Britain’s Got Talent in 2016.
Danny wowed the audience with his scouse humour and amazing voice – making this awards ceremony anything but bland!
LGBT+ Young Person
Sponsored by: Ripstone Games
Ben, who was named Stonewall Young Campaigner of the Year in 2019, has been working locally on a campaign to improve the support for transgender young people in school, following his own negative experience as a trans masculine young person in an all girls school. He has conducted individual research and interviews with trans young people and has made a short film to show why it is important that trans young people get appropriate support in school and what impact a lack of support has on not only education but also mental health.
LGBT+ Community Group
Sponsored by: Merseyrail
Comics Youth is the first organisation in the UK to provide holistic comics-based literacy and wellbeing projects for marginalised children and young people aged 8-25 and is based in the Liverpool City Region. The organisation is unique and is run by young people under 30 with the same lived experiences as its young people including LGBTQIA identities, mental ill- health, trauma and chronic illnesses.
House of Suarez: Vogue Ball
Community Event of the Year
Sponsored by: Riverside Housing
The Vogue Ball brings people from all walks of life together to appreciate, learn and enjoy dancing and arts of all kinds in a safe space together. It provides people with a community that they can be a part of, helping all people, but particularly the LGBT+ community to belong. It is a positive event, full of positive people, positive light and love. The growth and increasing success of the Vogue Ball is testimony to the fact that more and more people are being helped by this event and its organisers.
Campaigner of the Year
Sponsored by: Nonconform
Sue runs the Southport LGBTQ+ youth group New Beginnings, where young people go to be provided with a very safe place to confide in someone they trust and look up to as a fellow LGBTQ+ member of the community. Sue was once a victim of hate crime and openly shares her moving and inspirational story, volunteering her time to go into schools and workplaces to deliver a LGBTQ+ presentations on hate crime within not only the LGBTQ+ community but outside of the community too.
DCC Julie Cooke
Ally of the Year
Sponsored by: Love Lane Brewery, Bar & Kitchen
Deputy Chief Constable of Cheshire police and previously with Merseyside police for more than 26 years. Since becoming the Police Chief’s Council Lead on LGBT+ Julie is not only a local, but also national and international ally for all LGBT+ people and she works tirelessly to progress rights across the board. Julie stood firm when challenged for wearing her rainbow lanyard, which was deemed ‘too political’ and encouraged other senior leaders to follow suit, making the statement that love is not political.
LGBT+ Friendly Business
Sponsored by: Westminster Associates
Agent is an award-winning full-service brand and communications agency based in Liverpool’s Baltic Triangle. The agency has been led since its inception in 2006 by Paul Corcoran, a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community. Inclusivity and diversity to take centre stage at Agent and it has specific policies in place to ensure a comfortable working environment for every single member of the team. The business actively supports the LGBTQ+ community and even celebrated the city region’s thriving LGBTQ+ business community with a special event ahead of this year’s Pride in Liverpool.
Employee of the Year
Sponsored by: Liverpool City Region Combined Authority
Stephen, who is a bartender at The Lisbon, received multiple nominations describing him as “more than a bartender” and a “stalwart of the community” and praising him for his positive and caring nature. His nominations described how he has directly helped people from the LGBT+ community going through difficult times and recognised him as a continuous, constant and stable member of the LGBT+ community who goes above and beyond to ensure no one feels that they don’t belong.
Business Person Of The Year
Sponsored by: Morecofts Solicitors
Paul is chief executive of full-service brand and communications agency, Agent and founding director of social enterprise, Agent Academy CIC. As a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community, Paul has demonstrated extraordinary business and leadership skills and represents the Liverpool City Region’s business community in his role as deputy chair of the Liverpool LEP and industry champion of the Policy and Evidence Centre for the creative industries, among other roles. Through this, he ensures the voice of the LGBTQ+ community is heard by businesses, cultural institutions and organisations that lead on national policies
Sheena Marie Williams
Michael Causer Award for Work To Tackle Hate Crime.
Sponsored by: Micheal Causer Foundation
Sheena has a passion for research that supports those targeted by hatred. Her masters dissertation was original research concerning homophobia and was the FIRST research ever to include the opinions/responses from heterosexual males. She runs a page for LGBT women with over 13.5k people, a UK group for the same with almost 4K and an international group with 76k women from all around the world. She has now joined the probation service where she is a local lead for Pride in Prison and Probation.
Mersey Marauders FC
Inclusive Sports Team
Sponsored by: JackAll Productions
Mersey Marauders FC has been going for over a decade, providing an inclusive and diverse culture and atmosphere for people from all backgrounds, primarily aimed at – and run by – the LGBT+ community. It works with local and national initiatives around kicking out homophobia in sport and also supports the LGBT+ community on a general level, working alongside charities and community programmes.
Ruthie Adamson AKA Wonky Wordsmith
Performer/Personality of the Year.
Sponsored by: Barefoot Wine & Bubbly
nspirational spoken word poet Ruthie Adamson a.k.a. ‘Wonky Wordsmith’ is an artist and activist taking a stand and enabling the LGBT disabled community. Recently performing at the 2019 March with Pride muster, she is a voice to be heard amongst the masses.
Lifetime Achievement Award
Sponsored by: LCR Pride Foundation
Lady Seanne has been involved within the LGBTQ+ community for years and in that time has done so much for the betterment of the community. A truly professional performer and champion for LGBT+ rights, she is a wonderful person with a big heart and an iconic character who is a positive influence and continues to be an inspiration to many.
LCR Pride Foundation Award
Sponsored by: LCR Pride Foundation
Presented to Liverpool City Council’s cultural service in recognition of its role in establishing the LCR Pride Foundation, for its commitment to inclusivity and diversity and for its shared vision to make the Liverpool City Region the most LGBT+ friendly in the UK.
Speaking of their sponsorship of the awards, Jane English, HR Director at Merseyrail, said:
“Here at Merseyrail we are committed to eliminating discrimination and encouraging diversity amongst our workforce and beyond.
“Through our partnership with the LCR Pride Foundation we have taken part in a number of initiatives and will be setting up our own group internally focused on working together with the LGBTQ+ community.
“The LCR Pride Awards is a great way of showcasing the fantastic work the region’s LGBTQ+ community does to make the Liverpool City Region one of the most LGBTQ+ friendly in the UK.
“We are incredibly proud to be headline sponsors of the inaugural LCR Pride Awards”
Special thanks to our judges:
Donal Bannon Partner – Morecrofts
David Burton-Sampson – Mayor Of Basildon
Marie Causer Michael Causer Foundation
Sally Carr MBEOperational Director – Proud Trust
Sean Donnelly Deputy Leader – Knowsley Council
Jane English HR Director – Merseyrail
Josh Fletcher Creative Director – Gay Times
Chris Garrett Commercial Director – Hilton
John Glenton Executive Director, Care & Support – Riverside Housing
Steve McFarlane Chair – Michael Causer Foundation
Tracy O’Hara QPM Co-Chair – National LGBT Police Network
Flt Lt Caroline Paige Patron – LCR Pride Foundation
Cllr Liz Parsons Cabinet Member, Communities – Liverpool City Council
Hollie Pattison PR & Marketing Manager – Ripstone Games
Steve Rothram Metro Mayor – Liverpool City Region
Paul Thompson Director – Westminster Associates