Last week thousands of people in Cornwall came together to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s 70th Platinum Jubilee. As of now, the Queen is the longest raining British monarch with celebrations occurring across the 4 day bank holiday weekend in the Uk and Commonwealth.
The first day of celebrations saw Trooping the Colour in London with the royal family watching on the balcony with a military fly past and a parade including 1400 soldiers, 400 musicians and 200 horses.
Back in Cornwall, Truro kicked off the bank holiday weekend with the Lord’s Lieutenants parade which started at St Georges Road at 1 PM. The parade led by Town Crier Lionel Knight, The Lord Lieutenant of Cornwall, Colonel Edward Bolitho, and the Right Reverend Philip Mounstephen, Bishop of Truro, traveled around Truro and ended outside the cathedral for a small service. Several figures also spoke outside the cathedral including Truro Mayor Steve Webb, Grand Bard Bert Biscoe, and the Lord Lieutenant, with music from the St Keverne Brass Band and Truro Male Voice Choir.
Town Crier Lionel Knight alongside criers in Penzance, Fowey and across the UK made a proclamation to the Queen and her services and announced the beacon lightings later that night. A large screen allowing the public to watch the Jubilee and fairground rides was placed on Lemon Quay throughout the weekend.
Around 500 people attended the beacon lighting at Pendennis Castle later that evening with the grounds opening to the public for free. Mayor Steve Eva addressed the audience before the lighting saying “We are here to support a lady who has supported this country for 70 years. It’s a big day for her and I’m very pleased to see you have all come out to support the Queen”. Representatives from the Nankersey Male Choir, HMS Scott, and the 6th Falmouth Sea Scouts also attended the event with the beacon being lit by a knight at 9:30 PM.
A second beacon was lit at the Exchequer Quay at Penryn with the Pageant Queen arriving just before by boat. Around 70 registered beacons were lit across Cornwall with 3,000 further beacons lit across the Uk and Commonwealth to celebrate the Queen’s reign, with the Queen herself lighting the first one.
Friday saw a Jubilee parade fill the streets of Falmouth led by the Falmouth Marine Band, the mayor, councilors, MPs and other delegates including a Darlek. The band led the crowd through the streets with stops to sing the National Anthem, Trelawny and Pavarotti. As the parade reached Events Square, Mayor Eva said a few words thanking Falmouth councillors who set up the events before everyone joined arms in the singing of “Forever and Ever”.
Saturday saw the streets of Falmouth become filled again with a massive street party of around 800 people despite the poor Cornish weather. Partnering with Rowes, Squash, Pasties and sausage rolls were given out with a choir singing British songs outside Natwest and entertainment including a unicyclist and stilt performer.
Later that evening Falmouth Marine Band returned to Penryn to lead the carnival which had a red white and blue theme. Leaving the Memorial Gardens at 7 PM the Royal Carnival Parade was led by the Mayor, Town Crier and the Marine Band which did serval laps around Penryn. Other groups also joined the carnival including the Embrace Dance group and the Supreme Star Majorettes.
The final day of the Jubilee weekend saw a royal party in the park in Penryn and a Jubilee picnic in Falmouth’s Kimberley Park hosted by Source FM. Penzance also saw an interesting event organised for the jubilee Sunday: 70 classic cars were parked across the promenade representing each year of the Queen’s reign, from 1952 to 2022. A large pageant parade also took place in London on the final day of the Jubilee split into 4 different acts: for Queen and Country, The Time of Our Lives, Let’s Celebrate, and Happy and Glorious. Other music performances also took place that day such as Ed Sheeran.
Not everyone celebrated the Jubilee in Falmouth however, one storefront (Beanhive) on Arwenack St saw messages in their windows against the Monarch and the cost of the jubilee during the cost of living crisis. Some messages read: “We are celebrating a monarchy whose empire was built by plaguing and colonising 25% of the world whilst the cost of living crisis pushes us into early graves”.
Other signs repeated the iconic Sex Pistols lyric “God save the Queen and her Fascist regime” with another saying “screw the Jubilee, feed the poor”. The Jubilee has been estimated to cost taxpayers around £28 million in the long run during the cost of living crisis.