England’s long-reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, reached an impressive milestone in 2022. February 6 marked the 70th anniversary of her ascension to the throne. That’s quite a lengthy run of dedication and service to the people of the United Kingdom, the Realms and the Commonwealth. In fact, 7 years ago, she surpassed the monarch who held the previous record: Queen Victoria, Elizabeth’s great-great grandmother, ruled the British throne for 63 years and 7 months (1837-1901).
So, what do you do when your reigning monarch reaches such a significant anniversary? You have a party! It’s definitely an occasion to celebrate, don’t you think? The party in this case is called a jubilee, and everyone is invited to join in (whether you are a UK local or not). Let’s look at a few important facts about this upcoming historic event.
What Is the Platinum Jubilee?
Though the origin of the word “jubilee” has roots as far back as bible times, today it is used to refer to a monarch-specific event. Basically, a jubilee is a celebration to mark an anniversary year in a monarch’s reign. Particularly, their 25th, 40th, 50th, 60th, 65th and 70th year on the throne.
Since 2022 marks Her Majesty’s 70th year as Queen, the anniversary is called her Platinum Jubilee. All her previous jubilees have had specific names as well. In some ways, they are a little like wedding anniversary dates. Here is a list of all the previous jubilees:
- Silver Jubilee – 25 Years
- Ruby Jubilee – 40 Years
- Golden Jubilee – 50 Years
- Diamond Jubilee – 60 Years
- Sapphire Jubilee – 65 Years
When Is the Platinum Jubilee?
Though the Queen technically passed her 70th anniversary date in February, the official Platinum Jubilee celebration will take place between Thursday, June 2 and Sunday, June 5. There are many individual events scheduled in the United Kingdom during this 4-day holiday weekend, including parades, parties and pageants. It is expected to be a time of both revelry and reflection to honor the Queen’s 70 years.
How Do People in the UK Celebrate the Platinum Jubilee?
The Platinum Jubilee kicks off on June 2 with the Queen’s Birthday Parade. This is an annual event held every year on the second Saturday in June, but it is sure to be a grander event than usual given that 2022 is a jubilee year. Fun fact, though Her Majesty’s birthday is celebrated every year in June, her actual date of birth is April 21. How would you like to have 2 birthdays every year?
On June 3, there will be a religious service held at St. Paul’s Cathedral, intended as a time of giving thanks for the Queen and her years of service. Then, we go from reverence to a proper English ruckus the next day with a derby at Epsom Downs, followed by the Platinum Party at Buckingham Palace. The party will feature a concert that will be aired live on the BBC and is sure to bring out the world’s biggest stars.
The final day of jubilee events includes The Big Jubilee Lunch, which is something observed by communities all over the UK, as a time to get to know each other better when acknowledging the Queen’s leadership. And the jubilee comes to a close with the Platinum Pageant, uniting a wealth of artistic expressions to help convey the story of the Queen and her history on the throne. The pageant will include everything from theater and live music, to circus, street performers and visual art.
If you’re a fan or follower of the Royal Family, the Platinum Jubilee is sure to be the “can’t miss event” of the year. But if you don’t live in the UK, you might be wondering how you can participate. Well, there is certain to be a fair amount of international television coverage given the magnitude of the event, so many of us will be able to enjoy the celebrations from afar while sitting on our couch.
And The Bradford Exchange also offers a selection of Royal Family collectibles so you can own a piece of history for yourself. We even have a Queen Elizabeth II porcelain portrait doll created to honor her 95th birthday. See below for links to both, and thanks so much for reading! We hope you enjoy the Platinum Jubilee.
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Click to shop our Queen Elizabeth II portrait dollThe Queen's Platinum Jubilee: Everything You Need to Know by The Bradford Exchange