Relief as Hope fest bus adverts binned

Members of Blackpool's LGBT community and their supporters have praised a bus firm's decision to scrap an advertising campaign for controversial American preacher Franklin Graham.

Friday, 13th July 2018, 11:58 am
Updated Monday, 16th July 2018, 5:39 pm
PC Ian Ashton, community cohesion & hate crime officer, (Charlie Farrer, Felicity Xanders, Caitlan Andrew all young members of URPotential LGB&T Group), Nina Beavers URPotential LGB&T youth worker, (Kia Wood, Stryder Brown-Wood young members of URPotential LGB&T Group) PC Renee Hilton

Blackpool Transport announced it would be pulling the advertisements for September’s Festival of Hope at the Winter Gardens, featuring Mr Graham, on Tuesday.

The adverts had come under fire due to Mr Graham’s political views.

He described Islam as ‘an evil and very wicked religion’, and suggested that LGBT rights and activism was caused by the devil.

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Nina Beavers, who runs LGBT groups for young people at outreach group Urpotential, said: “I’m really pleased that they have rethought it and made themselves aware of the implications, because they have supported us in the past and supported our festival in February.

“It was disappointing then to see them supporting an event for somebody who is homophobic. I’m very pleased they have seen sense and made the change.”

Nina Parker, pastor at Liberty Church on High Street, said: “The people I have spoken to are really pleased and very relieved that these adverts are not staying on our buses because they found it offensive that somebody with such homophobic views would be advertised in such a way.”