Events to mark 200th birthday of Queen Victoria

Queen's Gardens in Newcastle-under-Lyme

A whole host of celebration events are planned in Newcastle-under-Lyme to mark the 200th birthday of Queen Victoria.

The schedule has been put together by a number of partner organisations – including the Borough Council – to commemorate the anniversary on 24 May.

Newcastle is home to a bronze copy of a famous statue of Victoria which is in Oodeypore in India. From this original, seven copies were made and they are now located in Queen’s Gardens, Newcastle-under-Lyme; Victoria Square in Adelaide; Guernsey; Aberdeen; Scarborough; The Royal Infirmary at Derby and Blackfriars Bridge, London. As well as the monument in Queen’s Gardens, the borough is also home to Victoria Hall in Kidsgrove.

Council Leader Simon Tagg said: “In 1903 the Mayor of Newcastle, Sir Alfred Haslam, MP, presented the town with one of the seven bronze castings of the Charles Bell Birch original marble statue that stands in India. It was unveiled in Nelson Place on 5 November, 1903 by His Imperial Highness the Grand Duke Michael of Russia, where she proudly dominated that entrance to the town until 1963. At this point it was moved to Station Walks to make way for the new ring road before coming to a new home in Queen’s Gardens in July 2001 where she has proudly stood since. Victoria is recognised as one of our greatest monarchs and I am delighted we are working alongside partners to mark what would have been her 200th birthday. The events which are planned have something for people of all ages andwill take place in both Newcastle and Kidsgrove.”

Events get started on 24 May with a launch event in Queen’s Gardens at 10.30am and will run until 6 June. Included in the programme of events are a talk by TV presenter Lucy Worsley, a “Great Victoria Sponge Cake Off” at the Guildhall, “Queen Victoria’s knickers” with youngsters at Newcastle and Kidsgrove libraries and Victorian themed activities for youngsters at Brampton Park.

Newcastle events: 24 May – Queen Victoria 200 launch – Queen’s Gardens – 10.30am. Victorian Tea Dance – NSCG Performing Arts Centre – noon – 3pm. An audience with the Queen –Brampton Museum – 7pm
24 May – 1 June – shop window dressing competition – Newcastle town centre

28 May – 1 June – Victorian themed activities for children – Brampton Museum – Mon – Sat 10am and Sun 2-5pm.

29 May – Talk: Victoria the woman – Newcastle library – 2pm

30 May – Victorian themed activities for children – Newcastle library – 1-3pm

31 May – Victorian themed games for children – Brampton Park – 1-3pm

A Victorian film show – Belong Village – 2-3pm
1 June – Queen Victoria 200 Festival – Newcastle town centre – 10am – 4pm

The Great Victoria Sponge Cake Off – Guildhall – 11am – 3pm
5 June – Talk by Lucy Worsley – Queen Victoria – daughter, wife, mother, widow – New Vic Theatre – 7.30pm.

6 June – Lucy Worsley book signing – Newcastle library – 10am

Kidsgrove events: 24 May – 1 June – Victorian shop window dressing competition – Kidsgrove town centre

26 May – Victorian Tea Party – organised by Go Kidsgrove and Kidsgrove Town Council – Victoria Hall, Liverpool Road, Kidsgrove – 2.30pm. Free but booking essential. To reserve a place contact Town Council Office 01782 782254. Includes music, games and monologues as well as the Great Victoria Sponge Cake Off.

31 May – Queen Victoria’s knickers craft activities – Kidsgrove Library.