This weekend has been our Anniversary weekend. Hubby and I have just celebrated 14 years of marriage. My Mum has had all 3 children and our granddaughter to stay with her for the weekend to give Hubby and I a nice break – and we have been busy! Over the next few days I will write all about it. But, it has struck me this weekend how proud I am to be British! As the whole world knows, this weekend is the Queens Diamond Jubilee. Celebrations have been taking place all over the country with street parties and other events. The biggest event today was the Thames Pageant. Hubby and I had talked about going into London to be a part of the celebrations but, in the end decided against it. The weather today has been predictably British – cold and VERY wet. Coupled with the crowds and public transport crush, we decided to watch it on the TV, with some nice food and a glass of wine in the warm! Hence, the pictures here have all been taken off of the TV whilst the Pageant was in process!
We hadn’t planned to get so caught up in the Pageant, but watched it from start to finish and loved every second. Thousands lined the river banks to cheer on the boats. Flags were waved, hats worn, Union Jacks decorated the route, people cheered and everyone was in a party mood. The Queen looked amazing and proud of the effort that her people had made to celebrate with her. The rest of the Royal Family were well dressed and all looked to be having a good time. Despite the persistent rain, it was quite some event. The Royal Barge looked exactly that – regal and elegant.
The flotillas wound their way along the Thames past the many iconic landmarks and under the many bridges -13 in total. Kayaks, Barges, Rowing Boats, Working Boats, Pleasure Boats, Ships and Motor Boats of every kind took part, one thousand in total.
Every balcony along the way was full of cheering spectators waving along with those who lined the banks. Eventually the Royal Barge approached Tower Bridge and the bascules opened for the Queen to pass through, in keeping with tradition.
Once through Tower Bridge, the Royal Barge – The Spirit of Chartwell moored next to HMS President and The Queen and the rest of the Royal Family were able to watch the rest of the flotilla makes it’s way past. Despite the now heavy rain, The Queen remained on her feet waving and smiling albeit underneath a canopy! Many proud serving and ex-servicemen were in attendance along with people from all walks of life.
I have many opinions regarding Britain, it’s government, policies and protocol and not all of them are positive. But today, I was very proud of our Monarchy and very proud to be British – even if the weather was abysmal!! God Save The Queen!