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Celebrating equality and diversity

Bourne Free is a celebration of diversity, equality and inclusion. The organisation was built to showcase the beauty in all of us through events, and entertainment that help spread awareness of the wonderful differences in all of us. You were born free and so were we, and that’s worth treasuring and protecting.


Our story.

Bourne Free was originally set up in 2004 when a far right organisation was due to come to Bournemouth and preach that homosexuality was wrong. Many prominent figures and active members of the gay communities in the area came together to organise an event in the Lower Gardens to protect the gay communities from the bigots and keep them together for a day of celebration, rather than of hostility.

The event included entertainers performing at The Bandstand to support diversity, a balloon release with a 2 minute silence for victims of hate crime and Bournemouth’s first Gay Pride march. By the end of the day those that had come together just a few weeks before the preachers came to Bournemouth, the Bourne Free Committee, felt that they could have done even more if they had more time.

Where we're going.

It was decided that the committee would get back together and repeat the event every year, but as an official charity with designated roles. Bourne Free would become an annual celebration in the heart of Bournemouth for everyone to see the diversities in the community and to enjoy a variety of entertainment. In 2006, the title of the event was changed to the Bourne Free Pride Festival.

Our Team.

Dedication. Expertise. Passion.

Meet our dedicated team of trustees, who give their time and energy tirelessy to make Bourne Free what it is today

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Jack Cannon

Parade & Site Manager

I attended Bournefree around 15 years ago for the first time, and it was my first experience of belonging somewhere. The trustees, volunteers, entertainers, and bars have worked tirelessly to put on an event thats inclusive for everyone despite who they love or who they identify as. Becoming a trustee has allowed me to give something back to the community that I'm proud to be part of.

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Dawn Lewis

Socials/Website & Site Manager

I have been working with Bourne Free as a volunteer since 2019, then joining as a Trustee in 2022. For me, Bourne Free is all about being YOU - the real, authentic, undeniable you! As Zanele Muholi once said; “If I wait for someone else to validate my existence, it will mean that I’m shortchanging myself.”


Neal Errington

Panto Lead & Suppliers

I have been involved with Bourne Free as a volunteer and trustee for the last 15 years. I've worked my way around the charity as the secretary, treasurer, fundraising, council liasion, and more recently Chair. Pride is so important to me as a same sex couple with a young child it's magical to instill safe places for all walks of life and families. Everyone has a place at Pride.



Chris Ashton-Hollis

Volunteers / Team Leaders

Have been involved since 2005 in some capacity, mainly as a trustee. I got involved cause I’m passionate about the community we live in and to ensure that we have a safe place for people to be who they are and to promote diversity and inclusivity across Dorset.


Rhi Toresen

Bars, VIP & Dog Show

I have been a Trustee since 2021. I organise/run/manage the bars with a great team. I first attended BourneFree in 2013. I wanted to get involved not only because Pride is my favourite time of year, but also because fighting the good fight for Equality & Diversity is so important to me. Making sure the community now and generations to come have a safe space to be their true selves.


Vice Chair

Lea Martin

Community Stage

Trustee since 2021. Been In Bournemouth for over 17 years. Been involved with BF for nearly as long. Ran garden stage for nearly 10 years. Now I manage the community stage at Pride and host Friday family night. I’m very proud to be a part of BF as it


Vice Treasurer

Marc Stanley
(aka AnnA Vincent)

Community Village & Stalls

I joined the board of Bourne Free Trustees in 2020 and have been an 'out' Trans Gender / Fluid member of the Dorset community since 2015. Having hidden away for over 40 years. I'm passionate about Trans people being visible. The more we are seen and educate, the sooner we shall be accepted in the wider world...



Louise Clarke

Main Stage & Suppliers

I have been involved in Bourne Free as a volunteer or trustee since it began.
I am mainly involved in operations, entertainment and the community fund. I am passionate about giving back to the community which has helped support and shape me and promoting inclusion throughout Dorset.


Vice Secretary

Sonja Critchley

Front Desk & VIP

I have been involved since 2017. helping out mainly with the Front Desk & Bar on the Big Weekends. I got involved because I want to help and create a stronger culture for generations to come. So that everyone has a true voice that is heard across Dorset.

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