South Tyneside lad Stuart Hatton – better known as Mr Gay UK – said he was honoured to be asked to turn on the rainbow lights to celebrate Northern Pride.
The 29-year-old from South Shields will flick the switch at Newcastle Central Station at 8pm tonight – leaving its new portico bathing in an array of colours.
We’re turning the whole of Central Station into a giant rainbow, the new atrium is full of glitterballs and rainbow clothsMr Gay UK, Stuart Hatton
“We’re turning the whole of Central Station into a giant rainbow, the new atrium is full of glitterballs and rainbow cloths,” the dance teacher told the Gazette.
“I got a phonecall from Richard Branston’s secretary a few weeks ago, asking whether I would light up Central Station as a celebration of Northern Pride. I was so excited, but I had to keep it quiet until today.
“It was such an honour to be asked to do that in such a diverse and inclusive city like Newcastle and the lights will be seen by tens of thousands of people arriving by train.
“I’m so excited. We actually had a dress rehearsal yesterday to make sure nothing went ka-boom, or that it didn’t light up in red and white by accident, but everything went fine.”
The lights will illuminate the station until Sunday morning, for an extra special welcome to the 65,000 people expected to visit Northern Pride this week, with three days of live music and entertainment, with performances by girl band B*Witched and 80’s star Belinda Carlisle. It is estimated it will boost the regional economy by £8million.