New Ely LGBTQ group holds candle-lit vigil for victims of Orlando shooting

Candles were laid down in Ely Market Place by the Ely LGBQT group in memory of the 49 people who wer

Candles were laid down in Ely Market Place by the Ely LGBQT group in memory of the 49 people who were killed during the shootings at a gay club in Orlando on June 12. - Credit: Archant

The newly-formed LGBTQ group in Ely paid tribute to the vicitims of the Orlando shooting by holding a candle-lit vigil in the city centre.

The Ely LGBTQ group.

The Ely LGBTQ group. - Credit: Archant

A dozen of the group, which was created in March to bring together lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer people in Ely and the surrounding area, laid candles at Ely market place on Monday June 13 to pay respects to the 49 people who were shot dead at a gay nightclub on June 12.

Among those paying tribute was Fritha Love, who helped kick-start the group three months ago.

She wants to use the group to encourage people in Ely and Cambridgeshire to be comfortable with their sexual preferences and to give them a safe forum to discuss their sexualities.

She said: “I was speaking to someone else who helped start the group and she said she was going down to put down some candles to remember the victims, so I joined her.

“We had about 10 to 12 people come down including a few people we didn’t know, which was nice.

“We also had some people walking down the street, shouting things like ‘good on you,’ which was really encouraging.

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“I moved to Ely recently from the North East, and what I found is that there’s not a lot around to encourage LGBTQ people to be about, so to speak.

“I realised that a lot of people in the community are not comfortable with people knowing if they are gay or lesbian, so that’s why we created a closed group, too.”

Fritha has also started a closed group – Hint of Pink – so that those less comfortable in discussing their sexualities in public have a place to chat and make friends.

The LGBTQ group is also to put on a host of events in the city – starting with a drinks night at the High Flyer pub on Friday June 24 at 7pm. All are welcome.

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