A free Proggy Pride Party is being held at Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens, at which members of the LGBTQIA community and their allies will get the opportunity to celebrate North East heritage by helping to create a huge Pride flag using traditional proggy mat techniques.
The event for young adults (aged 18 to 25), organised by the Celebrate Different Collective, will be held at the museum on Wednesday, September 13 between 6pm and 9pm. The session will be free, but booking is highly recommended.
The Celebrate Different Collective are Sunderland Culture’s young arts leaders – a team made of up of 12 young people who meet weekly to plan projects, co-produce and run their own cultural events and work with artists to learn new skills and support Sunderland Culture’s programme.
The flag making will be led by textile artist Louise Underwood. She will teach the young adults how to prog colourful rags into hessian sacking and about the history of this traditional craft, which was so closely connected to the working-class mining communities of the North East.
Young adults will also be able to bring their pre-loved clothing to create a new wardrobe of upcycled fashions in the Swap Meet zone. Textile artist Rosie Thornton and fashion students from the University of Sunderland will be on hand to help customise clothes.
Jennie Lambert, learning manager at Sunderland Museums, said: “Each young person will be given a token for each item of clothing they bring that can then be traded for another item of clothing.
“They’ll also be able to make a protest poster at the ‘mini print station’ with artist Mark Rogerson, using traditional print making methods. There’ll be delicious mocktails and themed snacks for people to enjoy.
“The group has discussed how traditional Pride events can be noisy and sometimes overwhelming. This event is designed to be fun, inclusive, accessible and sensory safe.”
The Proggy Pride Party is part of New Wave, a series of innovative youth-led events being produced for this year’s Heritage Open Days festival.
New Wave is a project by Heritage Open Days, which is presented by the National Trust and supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
For more information about the Proggy Pride Party, go to sunderlandmuseum.org.uk