Picture special: North Devon celebrates the Diamond Jubilee
15:58 05 June 2012
The region throws a right royal party as all ages enjoy the opportunity to celebrate 60 years of the reign of Queen Elizabeth.
A SPARKLING Diamond Jubilee party of majestic proportions took over North Devon at the bank holiday weekend as thousands turned out to help the Queen celebrate 60 years on the throne.
Towns and villages were strewn with a riot of bunting and Union flags as friends, neighbours and communities got together to mark the occasion and enjoy a four-day holiday.
The build up was worth the wait and as the nation celebrated together with the Royal family in London, North Devonians of all ages threw themselves into party mode with patriotic fervour.
From picnics and beer festivals to street parties and civic events, there was something in almost every community.
On Friday numerous local schools held their own street and garden parties in playgrounds and playing fields, while from Saturday through to Tuesday the rest of the region joined in.
Hundreds gathered in Ilfracombe on Sunday to spell out a living ‘EIIR 2012’ on Capstone, part of a packed programme of festivities in the town.
Crowds turned out in Bideford on Monday to watch a 1950s civic parade through the town followed by a family party at Victoria Park.
The three-day North Devon Beer Festival in Barnstaple Pannier Market was packed with people raising a glass to the Queen and enjoying the live music.
On Monday night, numerous Jubilee beacons were lit on hilltops across North Devon, from Lynmouth through to Holsworthy, including a three storey bonfire edifice created by the Torrington Cavaliers.
Some local people were able to experience the celebrations in the capital alongside the Royal family. Passionate royalist and special constable Marilyn Northcott of Northam won tickets to the star-studded Diamond Jubilee concert in the gardens of Buckingham palace.
In Appledore, the queen was kidnapped. ‘Her Majesty’, – in the form of a life-sized cardboard cut out, was a special guest at the village celebrations until her abduction.
But the cardboard monarch was returned unharmed after the misguided perpetrator realised the error of their ways.
The fickle British weather as ever played its part during the weekend, with some Sunday events affected. Heavy rain hit numbers at the Big Jubilee Lunch in Rock Park while a picnic following the Ilfracombe community photograph was rained off.
But overall the Diamond Jubilee spirit remained undiminished as North Devon did Her Majesty proud.
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