THE DIAMOND Jubilee was celebrated in style across York and North and East Yorkshire, as street parties got into full swing.
Thousands of people raised a glass to the Queen and their own community spirit to play their part in a national celebration of the monarch’s 60 years on the throne.
The party mood was set to continue today and tomorrow, and the “best of British” attitude shone through yesterday as most of the events planned for months went ahead despite the downpours.
One of the biggest celebrations was in Jubilee Terrace in York, which was named in honour of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897.
Hundreds of residents kicked off their street party on Saturday– organised by The Jubilee pub, St Barnabas Church and the Barnabas Centre.
The pub’s landlady, Kelly Bailey said: “It was an absolutely fantastic day – everybody pulled out all the stops, and when your street takes its name from a Diamond Jubilee, why not? It’s such a small area but with so many people, and some of those who have been living here for many years don’t know everybody, so to bring people together like this was brilliant.”
St Barnabas’ vicar Ursula Simpson, said: “We’re delighted people brought their friends and family along and that everybody came together to enjoy themselves, celebrate and feel a part of the community.”
Yesterday’s party in Albion Avenue, Acomb, York, saw residents recreating a picture of the street’s 1953 celebration of the Queen’s coronation.
Organiser Kate Biddlestone said: “The weather meant we had to huddle under the gazebos, but that brought everybody closer together, and the Jubilee has given us a real opportunity to build a sense of community.”
Stamford Bridge’s celebrations saw voluntary groups parade from St John’s Church to a party at the Low Catton Road playing fields, with about 1,000 people taking part.
In Wheldrake, two local children were crowned king and queen for Saturday’s Jubilee celebration, with the village hall staging the festivities.
Organiser Norman Cox said: “It started off with planning to give Jubilee mugs to schoolchildren and just grew from there – we were all amazed and it shows the importance of a wonderful celebration.”
The village of Burn, near Selby, staged its annual Big Lunch today and gave this year's event at the Wheatsheaf pub a Jubilee theme, with a crown competition, quiz, tombola, free barbecue and a photo and memorabilia exhibition. Donations have also been taken for the event's chosen charity this year, St Leonard's Hospice in York.
"We have good food, drink and lots of fun at the Big Lunch, and it proves once again what a fantastic community spirit we have in a little village," said parish council chairman Chris Phillipson, one of the organisers of the event.
In Museum Gardens in York, soldiers from the 103 Regiment Royal Artillery (V) fired a Royal Salute at noon on Saturday to mark Coronation Day, and more servicemen and women took part in celebrations in the evening, with a special concert at the Barbican Centre.
A Jubilee Wildlife Party was also held on Sunday in the Museum Gardens, while residents in Copmanthorpe, York, commemorated the Jubilee by creating signs welcoming people to the village with images selected from hundreds of items of artwork.
The local Beaver Scouts also planted a flower display including a new floral clock in the centre of the village, and youngsters from Copmanthorpe have been presented with a special coin through the projects run by the local parish council, Moxon Traffic Management and Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, as well as volunteers.
Residents in Sutton-upon-Derwent, near York, were due to plant a Great Windsor Oak, donated by the Crown Estate, as part of four days of Jubilee celebrations in the village from fancy dress parades and talent shows to cricket matches. Tonight, a Jubilee beacon is set to be lit.
Other parties staged over the weekend include those in Faber Street, in the Layerthorpe area of York, Elvington, Bishopthorpe, Heworth Cricket Club and St Clement's Church in York and in Stillington.
However, the wet weather forced the cancellation of an event at Acomb Green in York called 'The Big Picnic', organised by the churches of Acomb for the Jubilee weekend and which hundreds of people were expected to attend on Sunday.
Steve Redman, a member of the organising committee, said: "It was planned as such a big event that there was no way we could hold it in a building, but unfortunately we have had to pull the plug because of the torrential rain.
"There really is nothing you can do, but we have floated the idea of holding the event at a later date, possibly to coincide with the Olympics."
Meanwhile, a street party originally planned to be held on sunday in Heworth Hall Drive, York, has now been postponed until today because of the June downpours. It is expected to start between midday and 1pm.
In East Yorkshire, Beverley staged its own version of the royal boat pageant, with 50 vessels ranging from homemade rafts to historic barges taking to the town's beck.
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