This weekend all over the UK, towns and villages have been celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. Queen Elizabeth 11 has been on the throne for 60 years, having become Queen back in 1952 when Jude the Undergardener and I were just a year old.
In our village, Plealey, we celebrated with a street party which was enjoyed by villagers and their families from a few weeks old to 80 year olds. The population of our tiny village hovers around the 50 mark but it increased to over 130 today.
The village has been adorned with Union Jacks and red, white and blue bunting, hanging from trees, telegraph posts and house fronts. Today one of the lanes in the village, Well Lane became a long, thin dining room. The villagers have been baking and preparing food all week. Yesterday it rained heavily all day and from tomorrow into the rest of the week more wet weather is forecast, but today we awoke to blue skies and sunshine which graced us with its presence all day.
All the hedges and gates joined in and even one of the village benches had a flag.
The usually quiet Well Lane was lively today and greeted visitors with massed flags and bunting. Halfway down the lane the long, long table met us and invited us in.
And the villagers soon arrived and filled up the seats in time for the food to arrive. There was enough food to feed a big town let alone little Plealey.
The day drew some real characters, dressed in crazy hats and clothed in red, white and blue. Jude the Undergardener even wore red shoes while she waved her Union Jack flag.
The Queen herself graced us with her presence but she didn’t behave like a Queen, as I photographed her strangling one of her subjects!
Even the cakes were patriotic …..
Throughout the afternoon a traditional steam organ played merrily in the background.
In the little community room at the back of the chapel a display of memorabilia brought together by the villagers provided an extra interest as the afternoon drew to a close. A collection of celebration mugs from the past, books and old newspapers brought back memories for many villagers.
As I finish this post at the end of the day beacons glow on all the hills around us, glowing in the night sky.