Residents, shoppers and visitors can enjoy a royally good time in Newcastle town centre as part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.
The Council is working with Newcastle-under-Lyme Business Improvement District (BID), the Friends of the Guildhall and other partners to deliver a fantastic, fun-filled events programme over the extended four-day bank holiday weekend to mark Her Majesty becoming the first British Monarch to celebrate 70 years of service to the people of the United Kingdom, the Realms and the Commonwealth.
Families are being encouraged to get involved in a variety of free activities – taking place from Thursday, 2 June to Sunday, 5 June – where they can soak up the special atmosphere and also support town centre businesses.
One of the crowning glories is a free outdoor cinema, provided by the BID, which is taking place by the Guildhall on Thursday and Friday. There is a live stream of the BBC’s Platinum Jubilee coverage from 10am on both days followed by two family-friendly blockbuster films at 2pm and 5pm: The Queen’s Corgi and The Greatest Showman respectively on Thursday followed by Coco and Mamma Mia! on Friday. Street food, catering for all dietary requirements, is being provided by traders from Castle Artisan Market. People can bring their own seats and picnic blankets. Small, well behaved dogs are also welcome.
Complementing the outdoor cinema and market on Thursday is an antiques market and on Friday there is a general market.
For the remainder of the bank holiday weekend, a lot of the entertainment in the town
centre is provided by the Friends of the Guildhall thanks to National Lottery funding.
On the Saturday there will be a drumming workshop, a crowning ceremony, storytelling and a heritage film show provided by Ray Johnson from the Staffordshire Film Archive in addition to the ever-popular general market as normal.
On Sunday, there are charity and plant stalls on The Stones as well as a street party. People can bring their own food and drink or purchase from town centre shops. Chairs and tables will be available. Entertainment is being provided by two choirs (Loud Mouth Women and St. Mary’s Primary School) and there is also belly dancing, magic shows and face- painting.
The historic Guildhall is open on all four days, from 10am to 4pm, for people to view entries in a children’s art competition and memorabilia from the Queen’s 70-year reign.
There are also quizzes and craft activities for children.
Highlights at the Brampton Museum include a 1950s day on Saturday – including a series of free film showings featuring newly digitised footage of royal visits to Newcastle over the years – followed by a Big Jubilee Picnic Lunch on Sunday afternoon.
Visitors are invited to join The Little Vintage Tea Room from 1.30pm to 5pm for a picnic in the picturesque park, the museum’s café and its brand new event space. There is a children’s trail competition and a live stream of the Platinum Jubilee Pageant from London. Luxury picnic boxes can be pre-ordered online and the cafe is also serving their usual delicious cakes and sandwiches.
Cllr Stephen Sweeney, Cabinet member for finance, town centres and growth, said: “The Council is working closely with the BID, the Friends of the Guildhall and other partners to provide an action-packed programme of free events and activities in Newcastle town centre to celebrate the Queen’s unprecedented anniversary. The Platinum Jubilee is going to be a fantastic occasion across the UK, the Commonwealth and around the world. We’re really looking forward to bringing people of all ages together in our suitable decorated town centre to celebrate this historic milestone. It’s going to be a great, family-focused bank holiday weekend where lots of unforgettable
memories are made. The celebrations will also provide an economic boost for local
Meanwhile, there will be a carnival feel in the stunning Queen’s Gardens as local
schoolchildren and community groups come together for a parade.
Charlotte Pearce, Newcastle-under-Lyme BID’s Marketing Manager, said: “We are
delighted to welcome the public to our outdoor cinema to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee and bank holiday. We are very excited to bring the big screen to Newcastle town centre and offer a unique experience for people of all ages that is available free of charge. Our outdoor cinema is one of the ongoing events in the town centre that is hosted by the BID and funded by the town centre businesses. We really hope the people of Newcastle-under-Lyme and beyond will turn out in support as these events are the perfect opportunity to showcase the range of hardworking retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in the town centre.”
Hilary Jones, chair of the Friends of the Guildhall, added: “We’ve all worked really hard to make sure that the Platinum Jubilee celebrations in the town centre are really special. We’re hoping that as many people as possible take advantage of this opportunity to visit the Guildhall to see what the Friends are doing and to be part of the activities that we’ve arranged, especially the drumming workshop on Saturday from 11am and the crowning ceremony at 2pm when children are encouraged to come dressed as page boys or princesses for a re-enactment of part of the Queen’s Coronation. This will make a great photo opportunity for all the family.”