Queen Elizabeth II has been on the throne for seventy years, and this significant anniversary is celebrated across the UK with the Platinum Jubilee.
A four-day weekend starting on Thursday June 2 will begin to commemorate the occasion, with events planned across the UK. And there’s plenty for families in the North East to do and see, with Newcastle, Gateshead, County Durham, Northumberland and Sunderland all holding their own celebrations in their respective town centres.
A total of 200 community groups have received funding from Northumberland County Council’s £70,000 Jubilee Fund to help them organize events in towns and villages across the county. So, in addition to the events included in our list, there’s sure to be something going on near you – here’s a roundup of what’s happening in Northumberland.
Read more: Guide to North East Jubilee celebrations, from a cathedral picnic to a Kynren special
Hexham celebrates: music for the Queen’s Jubilee
Jubilee celebrations start early in Hexham, with a concert at the town’s Abbey on Friday evening. Brendan Foster will be a special guest while there will be beacon lighting in the market on June 2 and a regatta at Tyne Green Country Park.
Berwick’s floral tribute to the Queen
Over 9,500 bulbs were prepared and planted at Flagstaff Park in Berwick by Guides, Brownies and Rainbows to support the Queen’s Green Canopy – an initiative that invited people in the UK to plant a tree or bulbs for the Jubilee. The bulbs have been planted in the shape of an ‘ER70’ and the groups will celebrate their display with a special picnic, cake and poster contest in the park.
Jubilee Church Service at Alnwick
The County Service of Remembrance and Celebration will take place on Sunday June 5 at 6pm at St Michael’s Parish Church on Bailiffgate in Alnwick. There will be hymns, prayers and readings, including one from Duncan Davidson, who was a page at the Queen’s coronation.
The Duchess of Northumberland, in her capacity as Lord-Lieutenant, the Queen’s representative for the earldom, will also give a reading. Towards the end of the service, a special commemorative medal to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee will be awarded to frontline members of the police, fire service, prison service and armed forces.
Making Jubilee Lanterns at Cragside
From 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. from Thursday June 2 to Sunday June 5, Cragside invites families to help decorate the stately home by making and decorating paper lanterns to make it fit for royalty. There is no additional cost to participate once you have paid for your admission to the National Trust property.
How do you plan to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee? Let us know!
Jubilee celebrations in Wallington
Another National Trust stately home, a full program of events is planned for the Jubilee in Wallington. It starts on May 28 with a treasure chest trail that will run throughout mid-term, while from Monday June 30 you can get creative by making the Wallington Jubilee Bunting.
June 2-3 there are duck races on the River Wansbeck and Crown Making June 3-5. On Saturday, June 4, the Wallington carriages will be on display in the yard before the end of the week with live music in the yard on Sunday.
Five days of celebrations at Alnwick Garden
Alnwick Garden have announced a full program to mark the occasion. Guests will be able to enjoy picnics on the lawn of the Garden’s Barneyside Picnic Area while watching the celebrations unfold across the UK on a giant outdoor screen, including the Platinum Party.
There will also be a Right Royal Rendezvous on June 2, where some familiar princesses will meet and greet guests and pose for selfies. Children are encouraged to dress up for the occasion in their finest royal attire.
The greatest tribute on Deadwater Fell
One of Northumberland’s tallest lighthouses will be lit by Steve Cram in Kielder Water and Forest Park. From its position atop Deadwater Fell, it will be visible for hundreds of square miles across the borders between England and Scotland.
Subject to clear weather, there are also plans to broadcast live beacon illumination from one of Kielder Observatory’s telescopes. Tickets are free and can be booked here, with priority given to Kielder and North Tyne.
Dress to impress at Bamburgh Castle
If you’re visiting the UK’s favorite seaside town over Jubilee weekend, head to Bamburgh Castle and see what you’d look like as a royal with the Dress to Impress event. There’s a gift for children who show up dressed as a king, queen, prince, princess, knight, warrior or even fairy, while there’s also a Jubilee-themed afternoon tea served at the Clock Tower Cafe.
Hope the Dragon’s Platinum Jubilee Trail also takes place during the midterm vacation, where kids can follow Hope’s trail clues and find the special word. Those who complete the course enjoy the cafe, activity books cost £2.95 each.
Morpeth Platinum Jubilee Weekend
The Northumberland county town of Morpeth will host its Platinum Jubilee weekend on Friday June 3 and Saturday June 4. Split between the Sanderson Arcade and Market Square, there will be live music, a Jubilee-themed Farmers’ Market on Saturday and a window-shopping competition.
Ponteland Beer Festival and Party in the Park
Ponteland is planning four days of celebration, after the lighting of the lighthouse on Thursday evening. Ponteland Rugby Club will host their annual Beer Festival at the Leisure Center on Friday 3 and 4 June, while the annual Sunday Park Party incorporates the Jubilee theme this year – with a children’s fancy dress parade for n’ any royal costume.
Jubilee Picnic in the Park, Blyth
Usually known as the Proms in the Park, the Blyth event has changed its name to fit in with the 2022 occasion. Known this year as the Jubilee Picnic in the Park, there will be a marching band, local choirs, dance, theatre, theater troupes and singers from the English National Opera.
Eastwoods Park Jubilee Picnic in the Park, Prudhoe
Friends of Eastwood Park provides support to the local community through its food bank, school uniform bank and community cafe. It’s hosting a Jubilee Picnic in the park on Sunday June 5 with free kids’ entertainment, competitions, bouncy castles and face painting.
The longest chain of beacons in the UK on Hadrian’s Wall
The UK’s longest string of beacons will be lit along Hadrian’s Wall to celebrate both the 1900 Festival and the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. The beacons on the wall were given special dispensation to be lit later than those in the rest of the country at 10 p.m., in recognition of the scale and significance of the anniversary.
Northumberland County Show
The Northumberland County Show is back after a two-year hiatus, with its usual Bank Holiday Monday date moved to Friday June 3 to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee. Taking place on the grounds of Bywell Hall, there will be a whole host of things going on before the day’s main event, the Inter Hunt Relay.
Street parties throughout the department
The official government website promoted the idea of street parties to residents of the UK. To learn more about how to host one, you can visit its official website here. You can also check out all the events planned in your area on the Platinum Jubilee website.