Big Issue vendor Amanda will return to Pride Cymru this weekend

The 41-year-old is a Pride regular along with her family, but said she feels especially lucky to don the red tabard for the occasion

Popular Cardiff vendor Amanda Hill is set to sell The Big Issue at Pride Cymru after her stint at last year’s LGBTQ+ celebration was such a success.

Having been featured in the magazine, customers even approached her for autographs – and now they still go and speak to Amanda when they see her around the city.

“Last year was really good and I really got on with everyone,” the 41-year-old told The Big Issue.

“I go to Pride every year anyway, it’s a family celebration – I identify as pansexual and some of my children are gay. I’m really glad it’s something that happens, and that it’s so joyful. Things were very different years ago.

“I feel very privileged to represent The Big Issue at Pride, too, and to be asked specifically. I’m very pleased.”

Amanda has been selling The Big Issue since early last year. She is a full-time carer for her husband, and juggles that with selling the magazine on her Duke Street pitch – she particularly loves getting to talk to people while on her pitch and finds it gives her confidence. “I hadn’t worked before because I’d always been bring up children or looking after my husband,” she explained.

Amanda was previously forced to sleep in a tent in the streets of Cardiff for nine months, before being on a waiting list for temporary housing for nearly three years.

But there will be lots for her to celebrate at Pride this weekend, as she and her husband have just secured their “forever” home.

Remembering her late friend who died by suicide, Amanda knows that the LGBTQ+ community she’ll be celebrating with this weekend can be disproportionately affected by mental health issues – similar to the homeless community – and said she has a new goal of working with people with poor mental health, especially rough sleepers.

“It can be really hard for them to see a doctor or get the support they need,” she said.

She told The Big Issue she is looking forward to speaking to and meeting a lot of new people at Pride while feeling relaxed and accepted – as well as selling lots of magazines.