It's not every day Newry gets a mention outside the famous Opera House in Sydney, Australia.

But that's exactly what happened this week when the city's Sydney Queer Irish group got together to show solidarity with the Newry Rainbow Community's Pride In Newry team who for the first time will be hosting UK and Ireland Pride at the Newry festival on 31 August.

Members of Sydney Queer Irish and friends say hi to their Newry friends from the Sydney Opera House.
Members of Sydney Queer Irish and friends say Hi to their Newry friends all the way from Sydney Opera House.

Paul Savage who's originally from Newry is a former Co-Chair of Sydney Mardi Gras and plans are afoot to organise a contingent from Sydney to travel to Newry in August.

Commenting on how far Newry has come since he lived in the city Mr Savage said “I’ve been watching what the Newry Rainbow Community and Pride In Newry have been been doing over the last 7 years and I think they have done an amazing job that Newry and NI should be very proud of. Changed times since I lived in Newry 15 years ago...”

Talks are also underway with Australian Artist Courtney Act about joining them and putting on their own event as part of the festival celebration.

Commenting on the worldwide audience Rory Rafferty, Chairperson, Newry Rainbow Community said "It’s absolutely amazing to receive such a tangible expression of support from the other side of the world. It’s extremely heartening for me and the team to know that our message is being received far and wide! We look look forward to welcoming Sydney Mardi Gras, Sydney Queer Irish and Channel 7 News Australia to Newry in August for UK and Ireland Pride"

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