It's the run up to Herts Pride, Hertfordshire's biggest LGBTQ+ celebration, and Hertsmere is playing its part by celebrating and sending its own message of support.

A Pride Progress flag was raised outside the Civic Offices in Borehamwood on Wednesday at a ceremony attended by councillors, council officers, and the police. 

Pride Progress is an updated version of the rainbow Pride flag, which better represents diverse communities. Pride flags are also being raised in Aberford Park in Borehamwood, Parkfields and Oakmere Park in Potters Bar and King George Recreation Ground in Bushey.

Herts Pride will take place at Cassiobury Park, Watford, on Saturday (August 14) and includes stalls, a funfair, live entertainment and the Herts Pride Dog Show.

Cllr Meenal Sachdev said: "Here in Hertsmere, we live in a wonderfully diverse and vibrant part of the county, where the rights of all people to live their lives are respected and enjoyed.

"It’s distressing to think then that too many people within the UK and throughout the world experience violence, harassment and discrimination because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

"I'm so delighted that this year Herts Pride, Hertfordshire’s biggest LGBTQ+ celebration will be able to go ahead and I hope as many people as possible can enjoy it safely and respectfully."

Related: Call for 'rainbow crossings' in every Hertfordshire district

Sergeant Noel Buckley, from the Hertsmere safer neighbourhood team, said: "We are committed to making sure that Hertsmere and the wider county is safe for all our diverse communities and we work hard with our local partners to achieve this.

"We have dedicated LGBTQ+ Liaison Officers who are specially trained to help the LGBTQ+ community.

"If you want to speak to one for non-urgent advice, just call 101 or contact us online. In an emergency or if a crime is on-going, always report it immediately via 999. The support of an LGBTQ+ Officer can then be requested if required.

"Please never hesitate to get in touch if you are the victim of an LGBTQ+ hate crime. We are here to support you and you will always be taken seriously and treated with the respect you deserve."