Whether you’re a seasoned Gibraltar visitor or new to the area, it is more than likely that you’ll encounter some form of national pride or reference to the long history of independence so famously paired with the British territory. Wars, independence referendums and political debates have long since been associated with Gibraltar and especially in the current political climate, national pride and debate is as potent as ever. A trip to Gibraltar means a trip into its long running and rich history and nothing sums this up more than National Pride Day, a day of festivities and political rallies from both the main and opposition parties which bookmark the end of the summer. Below is everything you’ll need to know about National Pride Day, whether you’re looking for places to stay in Gibraltar or merely interested in visiting the area.
National Pride History
Gibraltar National Day stems from the independence referendums held in Gibraltar. Back in 1967, the population of Gibraltar was asked if it wanted to remain under British sovereignty or move into the rule of Spain. The referendum voted to stay under British rule but have its own independence on matters of local interest. The Gibraltar national day was concocted by Gibraltar Chief Minister Joe Bossana in 1992, when he argued to the United Nations the case of Gibraltarian self-determination. This meant that Gibraltar was given the chance to mould its own future and the celebration on 10th of September every year celebrates this. The event is known for being a cathartic and celebratory experience, due to the long history of struggle and turmoil associated with the shaping of the territory, it’s easy to see why.
Events this year
Every year sees a whole range of events take place in Gibraltar. Usually the events consist of a children’s fancy dress competition, political rallies, live music and DJ’s. With the mass of amazing venues available it’s unsurprising that so much happens during the festivities. From the grand Casemates square to the atmospheric St Michael’s cave, this year saw a range of diverse performance from rock concerts to child friendly festivities. Visitors can expect to see bouncy castles, funfairs, a parade and many red and white balloons. Although this year’s festivities have already passed, anyone planning on renting holiday apartments in Gibraltar next September should consider tasting some of the festivities next year, if for no other reason than the all-encompassing fun and all age catering events.
One element of the festivities which is of interest is the political rallies associated with the area. Often incorporating music and lively discussions and speeches, both the main party and opposition parties of Gibraltar deliver speeches in iconic areas such as the John Mackintosh Square. One of the most interesting elements however is not the focus on politics during the national holiday, but a celebration of civic independence and national pride. This means that political parties associated with Gibraltar focus not on self-promotion but on what the territory stands for collectively. For those staying in the Hotel Caleta during National Pride Day, you’ll be sure not to be disappointed by the wide range of events open to you.