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Europe’s first ‘rainbow crossing’ unveiled in Brighton

By Sam Rigby

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Europe’s first ‘rainbow crossing’ has been unveiled in Brighton today (June 9).

Local artists worked overnight to give Madeira Drive the special makeover to coincide with LGBT Pride month, with singer and actress Heather Peace on hand to unveil the installation.

It is the first official crossing of its kind in Europe, joining cities like Los Angeles, Sydney, Melbourne and Tel Aviv. Unofficial crossings have appeared in Moscow, Paris, Shanghai and Cambodia as a mark of support for the LGBT community.

The unveiling of the crossing ties in with Peace’s new single We Can Change, which champions gay rights.

She said: “I knew there could be no better place in Europe to create a Rainbow Crossing than in my home town of Brighton. We Can Change, is my big gay anthem.

“It’s an empowering tribute to equality and I wanted the crossing to be a beautiful symbol to represent that during LGBT Pride month. It’s a gift from me to anyone that embraces diversity.”

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Julieanne Gilburt and street artist Cassette Lord worked alongside a team of artists for the JAG Gallery and the Modern Gallery on the crossing.

“We’ve loved creating the rainbow crossing. It’s a beautiful message and a perfect addition to the artists’ quarter on Madeira Drive,” Gilburt said. “We hope everyone will come down and enjoy it.”

Brighton Pavilion MP, Caroline Lucas, described the crossing as a “great tribute to that spirit of diversity and inclusiveness” embraced by Brighton.

Locals have been urged not to treat the ‘rainbow crossing’ as an official crossing, as it is not covered by government traffic regulations.

(Photo credit: Michelle Robek)

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