Britain and the Commonwealth have stopped to pay homage to Queen Elizabeth II marking 60 years of The Queen's reign. Diamond Jubilee celebrations in Britain have centred around an extended weekend comprising of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th of June.
Starting with Epsom Horse Racing, celebrations turned to street parties on the saturday with swathes of streets closed across Britain allowing for the placement of long tables in roads on which families placed party food and decked out the streets with bunting. On saturday afternoon the royal barge sailed down the Thames passing a series of reminders of the Queen's reign, surrounded by a spectacular flotilla of craft of all sizes flying aloft all the flags of the Commonwealth while on the river bank crowds waved on with Union Jacks despite some cold weather and persistent rain.
To Sunday with a concert in front of Buckingham Palace. The diamond jubilee concert features a star-studded line-up of performers including Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder, Elton John, Ed Sheeran, Jessie J, JLS, Kylie Minogue, Robbie Williams and Alfie Boe, who are to perform on a spectacular stage built around the Queen Victoria Memorial, right in front of Buckingham Palace. Hosts include Rob Brydon, Miranda Hart, Lenny Henry and Lee Mack. Proceedings conclude with HM the Queen lighting the National Beacon. After which beacons across the land are lit followed by firework displays in many places.
On Monday The Queen and other members of the Royal Family will attend a national service of thanksgiving at St.Paul’s Cathedral. It will include a prayer written, at The Queen’s direction, by the Chapter of St Paul’s Cathedral in honour of the Diamond Jubilee. A ‘Diamond Choir’ of children from around the UK will sing a specially composed song. Later in the day, the Royal Family will travel from Westminster Hall to Buckingham Palace by carriage, along a processional route. Shortly after their arrival, the Royal family will appear on the balcony and an RAF fly-past will take place.
The Queen has provided remarkable service to her realm for which every one of her subjects should be grateful. She has done a fabulous job for Britain in particular over the years alongside Prime Ministers starting with Churchill and running through Macmillan, Thatcher and Blair to present day Cameron. She is a highly knowledgeable and shrewd operator whose performance as monarch has been virtually flawless. May those who follow her use her as an example.
Queen Elizabeth II, the Westminster Journal salutes you.