It’s going to be a big weekend to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee. But what are your plans? Check out some great events in London and near where you live.
From Saturday 2 to Tuesday 5 June, the country will bring out the bunting as revellers enjoy a packed programme of Jubilee themed events including festivals, pageantry, processions, street parties, beacons, and the most magnificent flotilla seen in centuries.
Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant
On Sunday 3 June, The Queen will lead a flotilla of up to one thousand boats from the UK, the Commonwealth and around the World for The Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant.
This promises to be one of the major focal points of the celebrations held on the Jubilee Bank Holiday weekend.
The flotilla, expected to measure 7 and a half miles from end to end, will be the largest fleet of ships to be assembled on the River Thames in 350 years, continuing a royal tradition which dates back to 1533 when Anne Boleyn travelled by boat for her coronation.
Over one million people are expected to line the banks of the Thames to witness the pageant which will include a diverse mix of the historic and the modern with rowed boats, sailing ships, steamers, wooden launches, canoes and Kayaks all decorated for the occasion.
Thames piers, riverside roads and bridges will be closed to traffic and there will be up to fifty big screens along the route – which runs from Putney Bridge to Tower Bridge – so members of the public can enjoy the pageant from a variety of vantage points.
Download a infographic, courtesy of Londontown.com, to see what’s what along the Thames
Diamond Jubilee Festival at Battersea Park
On the day of the Queen’s Thames Diamond Jubilee River Pageant, Battersea Park will be host to a family friendly Jubilee Festival featuring vintage music, dance, crafts, funfair and a multitude of other entertainments.
Beginning at 12 noon, in anticipation of the flotilla, and continuing until 7pm, the Diamond Jubilee Festival at Battersea Park will feature a diamond geezer pop-up pub – where every self-respecing pearly king and queen will be for a right old knees-up – and a diamond encrusted giant cake stand that will take over 1,000 diamond jubilee themed cakes which will be served with tea throughout the afternoon.
Cake specialists Konditor and Cook have even created a pixelated portrait of the Queen made of 3,120 cakes, one for each week of her reign. The festival, which has been organised by designer Wayne Hemingway and artist Clare Patey who curated Feast on the Bridge for the Thames Festival, will be a memorable celebration of the Diamond Jubilee through a timeline of the six decades of the Queen’s reign with music, dancing, design and plenty of opportunities for dressing up – from vintage fashions to Morris dancing.
There’ll be a village fete, storytelling, outdoor cinema, old fashioned steam fair, fancy dress flotilla on the Boating Lake, and a mini-musuem of royal memorabilia at the park’s Pump House Gallery.
Battersea Park, Albert Bridge Road, Battersea Park, Battersea, London, SW11 4NJ
Nearest Tube: Sloane Square Station
The Jubilee Family Festival
A two day festival in Hyde Park this summer to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
Visitors will be treated to live music and entertainment at The Jubilee Family Festival, with the highlight being a 70 minute ‘Magic of Disney’ finale on both days comprised of Disney songs and characters.
The festival features a full programme of activities including celebrity performers, equestrian events, death-defying motorbike stunts and kids’ television characters. Headline acts include special performances from BBC One’s Strictly Come Dancing and The National Theatre’s War Horse as well as appearances from Myleene Klass and impressionist Jon Culshaw.
With seven giant screens showing live coverage of the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant on Sunday, crowds in the park will also be able to view the royal celebrations extending to the Queen’s procession to St Paul’s on Tuesday 5th June. The festival will showcase Britain throughout the decades, with street performers, orchestral recitals, military displays and Commonwealth dancers.
Hyde Park, Rangers Lodge, Hyde Park, London, W2 2UH
Tube: Knightsbridge Station
The Big Jubilee Lunch
Tables will be set up along the length of Piccadilly in celebration of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee on Sunday 3rd June, one of many London streets that will be closed to traffic as The Big Jubilee Lunch brings neighbours together for some food, entertainment and plenty of patriotic flag waving. Many of Piccadilly’s famous shops and restaurants are taking in part in one of the biggest Big Lunch events in London.
Added to this will be the local street parties – expect to see road blockades and bouncy castles as roads are shut and tables put up for The Big Jubilee Lunch.
Piccadilly Circus, Piccadilly Circus, Westminster, London, W1J 0DA
Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station
The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Beacons
A network of more than 4,000 beacons will be lit across the globe as part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Beacons which takes place on Monday 4 June.
The Queen herself is taking part, lighting the National Beacon at Buckingham Palace. At 10.30pm, she will place a crystal glass diamond into a special pod, triggering the lighting of the last beacon in The Mall where thousands of people are expected to gather for the concert.
Elsewhere in London, beacons will be lit on the battlements of the Tower Of London, St James’s Palace, and Lambeth Palace as well as smaller venues including the roof of Hammersmith Town Hall, the art mound in Mile End Park and the Garden Bar in Notting Hill.
There is a long tradition of lighting beacons to mark royal occasions: in 1897, beacons were lit to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee – the only other British monarch to mark a Diamond anniversary; and in 1977 and 2002 beacons were also lit to celebrate the Silver and Golden Jubilees of The Queen.
The London beacons will be lit at the same time as beacons at the Palace of Holyrood House Edinburgh, Killyleagh Castle in Northern Ireland, and on top of Pen Y Fan Mountain, Wales. Sixty beacons are being lit along the length of Hadrian’s Wall, each representing a year in the life of the Queen’s reign.
Service of Thanksgiving and Carriage Procession
On Tuesday 5 June, The Queen and other members of the Royal Family will attend a Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral, with a formal carriage procession and an RAF flyby bringing The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee weekend celebrations to an end.
The service, conducted by the Dean of St Paul’s and the Archbishop of Canterbury, will include a special prayer and a young choir created especially for the occasion after which The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will attend a short reception at Mansion House before joining other members of the royal family at Westminster Hall for a special lunch.
You will have a chance to see the Queen in the 1902 State Landau travelling in a formal carriage procession when the royal family leaves the Palace of Westminster for Buckingham Palace.
There will be all the pomp and ceremony you’d expect for such a unique occasion with representatives of the three military services lining the streets, military bands and a 60 gun salute during the carriage procession. An RAF Flypast and a celebratory cascade of rifle fire will create a rousing finale to the long weekend as the Queen and her family make a final appearance on the famous Buckingham Palace balcony.
St Paul’s Cathedral, St Paul’s Churchyard, City, London, EC4M 8AD
Tube: St. Paul’s Station