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Paul Sinha discusses Parkinson’s diagnosis on stage at the PEUGEOT Attitude Pride Awards

"I decided to take a positive outlook," said the star of The Chase while accepting our Pride ICON Award

By Jamie Tabberer

Paul Sinha at the awards ceremony
Paul Sinha (Image: Attitude/Kit Oates)

Paul Sinha used his acceptance speech at this week’s PEUGEOT Attitude Pride Awards to raise awareness of Parkinson’s, which he was diagnosed with five years ago.

The star of The Chase was one of four ICON Award winners at the ceremony, which took place at Raffles London at The OWO on Wednesday (26 June 2024).

DJ Adele Roberts, photographer Wolfgang Tillmans and Drag Race star La Grande Dame also won ICON Awards, alongside six members of the public recognised for moving the needle on LGBTQ equality.

“I decided to take a positive outlook” – Paul Sinha

Taking to the stage to accept his award, mastermind Paul said: “When I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2019, I decided to take a positive outlook. Having Parkinson’s is a bit like being a footballer out in Saudi Arabia. You know the shakes are about to take over your life!”

The 54-year-old continued: “That positive attitude means I’ve never seen myself as a victim. The reason I don’t see myself as a victim is, I’ve been surrounded by amazing friends and amazing family. My parents have been on the most incredible journey. They are conservative-leaning. What I mean by that is, they used to say to me: ‘You must marry a Hindu woman.’ Not: ‘Let’s leave this D-Day memorial.'”

Paul Sinha
Paul with Bimini, who presented the star with his award (Image: Attitude/KitOates)

The TV star also called out Labour leader Keir Starmer and spoke out in support of trans rights in his speech. Elsewhere, he discussed music that influenced him as a gay man, saying: “It’s exactly this week in 1984 that Holly Johnson [of Frankie Goes to Hollywood] was asking us to ‘relax, don’t do it when you want to come. And the late, great George Michael [of Wham!] was asking us to ‘wake me up before you go-go.’ It was an extraordinary time to love pop music in the UK.

“That was 40 years ago. We should have more progress. So never forget those who came before us. Those who ran so we can walk.”

“I refuse to let Parkinson’s control what I do”

Paul also reflected on his Parkinson’s diagnosis in an interview in the new issue of Attitude. “I enjoy showing the world that Parkinson’s doesn’t have to be the end of a story. It can be the beginning of one,” he said.

“Yes, it’s a rocky and less than ideal story, but I refuse to let Parkinson’s control what I do. Parkinson’s is not a nice thing to have. However, there are a million other things that are not nice in the world that are affecting other people.”

To find out more about the Pride Awards, check out issue 359 of Attitude magazine (below), available to order online here and alongside 15 years of back issues on the free Attitude app.

The cover of the latest issue of Attitude