After months of anticipation the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee weekend is nearly here. Next Saturday marks the start of the extended Jubilee Bank Holiday weekend and will see the official Diamond Jubilee celebrations get underway. If you’d like to know what, when and where the official engagements are taking place check out my day-to-day Diamond Jubilee guide.
Saturday 2nd June- The Epsom Derby
The Epsom Derby is famously a favourite event amongst the royals especially the Queen who attends annually. This year’s Derby will be no different as it’s the starting point for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations.
The Queen will attend the Epsom Derby as guest of honour and watch the races from the comfort of the Royal Box where she’ll be able to see all of the action. Some might be surprised to see the Derby as an official event, however I am not. As the Queen is a lover of all things equine and has enjoyed visiting the Epsom Downs Racecourse throughout her reign.
Sunday 3rd June- The River Pageant
The River Pageantis set to be the most spectacular event of the Diamond Jubilee weekend as over 1000 boats will sail down the River Thames on Sunday afternoon. The boats will range in size, style and appearance but will each bring a sense of Royal Britannia to The Thames which is expected to be lined with spectators.
Leading the River Pageant is the Gloriana, an 88ft royal barge made specifically for the River Pageant. Gloriana will undoubtedly be the centre piece of the river show but the Queen will not be travelling in the Gloriana. Instead she will be aboard another boat in the pageant, however, Olympian Sir Steve Redgrave will be one of Gloriana’s oarsmen which I’m sure is a huge honour.
I’ll be writing more about the River Pageant later in the week- keep an eye out for this post.
Sunday 3rd June- The Big Lunch
On Sunday The Big Lunch project organised by The Eden Project will see communities, neighbours and families across the country coming together for a jubilee lunch. Your Big Lunch could be a street party with 100 residents from the same village or a low key garden party with you and your closest neighbours. It’s completely up to you. The project just hopes to bring communities together, and this year, celebrate the jubilee.
Monday 4th June- The Diamond Jubilee Concert
On Monday music’s most iconic performers will take to the stage in front of Buckingham Palace to perform at The Diamond Jubilee Concert organised by Take That singer Gary Barlow. Entry to the concert is free for those who obtained tickets from the public ballot – so please don’t turn up without a ticket.
The lucky ticket holders will be invited to a picnic lunch in the Buckingham Palace gardens prior to the concert where the likes of Sir Paul McCartney, Elton John, Cliff Richard and Tom Jones will perform. I imagine that there will be lots of surprises throughout the evening with many performers using the concert as an opportunity to honour Her Majesty’s reign.
Once the performances come to an end a series of Beacons will be lit across the country and in the commonwealth. At 10.30pm the Queen will light the last Beacon, which is thought to be called the National Beacon. Once lit, concert goers will be able to enjoy a spectacular Diamond jubilee firework display.
Tuesday 5th June- The Royal Procession
After three days of celebrations the Diamond Jubilee weekend will come to an end with a more formal royal procession. On Tuesday a service of thanks giving will take place at St Paul’s Cathedral followed by a reception at Westminster Hall.
The Royal Family will then travel in a traditional carriage procession from Westminster to Buckingham Palace. The Queen and Prince Phillip will lead the procession followed by the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall and finally Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.
The procession will travel through Whitehall, past Trafalgar Square and proceed down The Mall where most of the well-wishers are expected to be awaiting the Royal Family’s arrival. Once the carriage arrives at Buckingham Palace, the Queen and fellow members of the family will appear on the balcony where they (and spectators watching from The Mall and on the TV) will be treated to a Diamond Jubilee flypast by RAF.
What a fantastic Diamond Jubilee weekend we have to look forward too!