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YES!! London Mardi Gras may go under
mini me + poo
Shareholders in London Mardi Gras may decide to close the company which runs the capital’s annual Pride party and parade.

The decision will be made at a crunch meeting on 23 October, as the Pink Paper hits the streets.

Bosses have been told by the Royal Parks that they will not be able to hold the event at Hyde Park again next year after they failed to pay the quarter-million pound fee for renting the land this July.

And now shareholders have been told in a set of notes circulated by bosses before Thursday’s annual general meeting that “it is still unclear whether or not the company is legally solvent”.

The notes, which were leaked to the Pink Paper, give shareholders four options.

They can “inject new share capital”, but many have already accepted they have lost tens of thousands of pounds.

Alternatively they can put the company into liquidation themselves or get creditors to do it for them.

Lastly they could choose to “try to continue with the existing company” and hold the festival “in a different location”.

However, some shareholders have already accepted that the event will never make a profit unless it is at Hyde Park and the notes tell them that the Royal Parks will not let them return there. The firm still owes the venue £210,000.

The company has been running Pride since 1999 but has only made a profit once, in 2001, and it lost almost half a million pounds in 2002.

Jason Pollock, festival director, said he didn’t know what would happen at the meeting.

“My personal feeling is that it won’t close,” he added. “But it is a bit of a knock that [Hyde Park] won’t let us go there.

“Of course I want it to continue but I am just one of 29 shareholders.”

... and a well-paid employee of the company too, presumably.

It's incredible isn't it? The people who failed to save the Pride Trust when it owed a few tens of thousands of pounds on the grounds it was 'unprofessional' have managed to lose hundreds and hundreds of thousands of pounds. They've lost more than PT did in four out of their five years: 1999, 2000, 2002 and 2003.

Of course, some of this is because they've paid themselves, either directly or indirectly eg through advertising, a pile of money, but you still wouldn't trust this bunch of 'professionals' to run a whelk stall, never mind a festival.

Now to see what happens.

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hundreds and hundreds
I assume you mean hundres of thousands?

If they can't get the maths right, why should I? :)


I was confused with that one as well, but if you only have ten hundreds I guess that makes a thousand, and a hundred hundred would be quite a few quid : )

It's really interesting, all of this, I wonder if it is feesible to hold a festival in London anymore, and what the real reasons are or have changed since th Pride Trust. There was a similar scare with the Carnival this year as financial sponsors backed out, due to mismanagement. Quater of a Million quid seems a bit steep to hire Hyde Park for a day.


The main reason is that as a commercial venture out to make a money for its shareholders, they get charged much more than the Pride Trust ever did.

And the PT only had one full-time paid employee - Teddy - and, in 1997, a part-time assistant. This lot have paid themselves rather more.

So the expenditure has risen much faster than the income, despite charging punters to be at the festival.

Yep, I Understand that sort of thing, but in this day and age, do you think that it's feesible to put on a free festival in London without making a loss ? My answer would be no, and if that is the case, then the Capital should pay for it, since it makes enough money from the spin offs, if you know what I mean.

However as long as Jeremy Joseph has nothing to do with it.... : )


The PT's income to do the festival came from

#1 Sponsorship - one of the areas LMG (spit) did well at, in numbers of sponsors at least.
#2 Selling monopolies - like catering, the market place, a fair etc at the festival.

In both these cases, you know you'll get more people (because it's free) so you can charge more.

Add a few fundraising events (like Winter Pride) and it's still viable iff it doesn't cost too much to put on.

And you're right: in 1997, the last year of LGBT Pride at Clapham, LU said there were a million extra tube journeys due to Pride. Their profit on those alone would have paid for it.

Are we really going to miss this level of commercialism? Have to say we went to manchester instead this year and of course brighton.

"Legally solvent" means "able to pay its debts as they fall due". Not knowing whether they are or not means either that they don't know how much money they have, or that they don't know how much debt they have. Looks like a directors' liability claim waiting to happen, doesn't it?

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