The Welsh LGBTQ+ community can sometimes feel lonely, detached and utterly forgotten.

“I remember the very first meeting that Heart Of Wales LGBTQ+ held in Llandovery,” says television actress Ella Peel, who is kown for her roles in Hinterland, Ordinary Lies and Pobol Y Cwm.

“Some members who were visibly queer felt very frightened to attend.

"But now, less than a year later, they’ve gained so much confidence and are happy to go out without worrying about what people will say or think.”

Despite being straight, Ella shares a very strong affinity with the LGBTQ+ community that lives around her hometown in Llandovery.

“I learnt that one of my friends was feeling very disheartened with the fact that nothing was happening in Llandovery for Pride,” she explains.

“I’ve always considered myself their ally but that’s not enough. I wasn’t doing anything.”

And so Ella formed Heart Of Wales LGBTQ+, which gives people the opportunity to meet, talk, share their concerns and have fun.

“Nineteen people turned up for the very first meeting which proved just how much it meant to them," she said.

"What must it be like living in a rural area where you don’t have access to LGBTQ+ organisations?

"If you’re part of a marginalised group, you’re more likely to suffer from mental health issues and that’s just a fact.

"And I can only imagine how hard it would be for me, a Welsh person, if the only access I had to integral parts of my heritage were based many miles away.

"But this is what the LGBTQ+ people in rural Wales have to endure.”

This summer, to reinforce the importance of the rural LGBTQ+ community, Ella and the Heart Of Wales are staging Llandovery Pride, which takes place on June 25.

The day will include a parade, stalls and food, a family picnic in the castle park with drag storytime in the castle ruin and children’s activities.

A soapbox stage will run throughout the afternoon enabling people to discuss queer contemporary issues.

Llandovery Pride will culminate with an evening hosted by Llandovery-born drag artist Miss Beaver on the cabaret stage who will be joined by five Welsh LGBTQ+ acts.

“It’s fantastic that Llandovery Pride is taking place on June 25, but it’s also important to realise that it’s just for one day,” added Ella.

"And the following day the queer community will once again feel isolated.

"This is why Heart Of Wales LGBTQ+ continues to go from strength to strength…it’s here for everyone, 365 days a year.”