Discussions are under way to stage a succession of events to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee this year to mark her tenure as the nation’s longest-serving monarch.
The region’s Lord Lieutenants said that they hope the closer bonds which have been formed in communities during the coronavirus pandemic will provide the foundations for the celebrations, which will be centred on a long weekend in June.
A jubilee trail is also being planned for Halifax to celebrate the Royal connections with the town, focusing on the Queen’s previous visits there.
Princess Elizabeth visited Halifax for the first time in 1951, along with her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh. She returned to Halifax as the Queen in 1959, 1976, 1994 and most recently in 2010.
Leeds, Wakefield, Kirklees, and Bradford are all looking at ways to involve the community in the celebrations. Plans are being drawn up to illuminate buildings in Leeds as well as staging a major event in Millennium Square.
Bradford has been heavily involved in the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative, and 3,000 trees were planted in a single day at an event in November last year.
West Yorkshire’s Lord-Lieutenant, Ed Anderson, said: “There is a long and unbroken tradition in our country of celebrating Royal Jubilees and of all those celebrations in the past this is a unique milestone in our history.
“I believe this is the most wonderful opportunity for community groups, local organisations, businesses and individuals to be involved and get together to be part of this incredible occasion which future generations can look back on with pride.”
The Queen usually spends the anniversary of her accession privately at Sandringham and having been recently ordered to rest by doctors following an overnight hospital stay for unspecified preliminary investigations, it is not yet clear which events she will attend nationally.
The national programme of events to mark the Platinum Jubilee will include a concert featuring stars of music and entertainment, private Royal residences opening their doors to the public and a celebratory pageant.
The majority of celebrations will be held in the summer starting on June 2, the first day of a special four-day bank holiday, when the Queen's Birthday Parade will take place in Horse Guards Parade.
Over that long weekend, beacons will be lit, a thanksgiving service will be held at St Paul’s Cathedral and Sandringham and Balmoral will welcome visitors.
The star-studded Platinum Party At The Palace will take place June 4. The line-up has yet to be confirmed but it is being billed as bringing together some of the world's biggest names in entertainment.
The bank holiday events will draw to a close with the Platinum Jubilee Pageant on June 5, which will see a River Of Hope - made up of 200 silk flags - make its way along the Mall in a parade that will feature key workers and military personnel.
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