Monarchy in the UK

Queen Elizabeth II – Diamond Jubilee 1952-2012

London. It’s a mad busy place. Arriving on a Bank Holiday weekend, AND the day of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, it’s a mad busy crushing place. God save the Queen and spare a thought for us; we need to get from Paddington to the Strand. Luckily London cabbies are famous for ‘the knowledge’ of their city, and with assertive intimacy our driver navigates a non-stop maze of detours, parting the waves of hundreds upon thousands heading toward the Thames to see the jubilee flotilla. London is all flags and bunting, keen for a pageant, a show of colours, and a right royal wave. The English are proudly patriotic and protective of their Queen, yet politely, give the few foolhardy republicans willing to stick their heads above he parapet a hearing. Not that anyone was really listening mind.

In a store the following day I over-heard a women – hair in scarf, like Liz on a Balmoral Estate outing – ask the shop-assistant if they were feeling patriotic. As the women placed two Union Jack egg-cups on the counter the assistant explained how over-joyed he was to finally see the Queen; after waiting five hours in the cold and wet for the thousand ship armada. “You should feel proud she says.”

From the suburbs of London (we visited cousins in Enfield) to the towns on our way to the East Midlands (the countryside of Rutland for a weekend breather from the city), it’s more flags, and more bunting. Clive James in his Telegraph column cheered enthusiastically for the punter: “A royal event may be rained on, but can’t be rained off. Come hell or high water, it must proceed… what astonishes even those of us expatriates who have lived here for decades is the courage of her people. No amount of threatening water can daunt them. Early in the day, small groups of people who had camped out all night were interviewed. Already coated in plastic, they were ready for anything the heavens could throw down.”

David Mitchell in the Observer noted, slightly tongue-in-cheek, that while the Queen’s subjects took a holiday, so did the media; the world beyond Britannia ceased.

Colourful and eye-catching ‘souvenir editions’ hit the stands and were snapped up by millions, who leafed eagerly past the wide-angle photographs of pageantry and cheeky close-ups of the younger royals to find… nothing. That section of the papers between a front-page celebrity snap and news from Syria seemed to have disappeared.

But then this doesn’t happen every day, does it?

2pm arrival in London

2pm arrival in London
Photo: InkEatsMan

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Oxford Circus – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Oxford Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

The Strand – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Denmark Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Northumberland Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Great Marlbourgh Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Newburgh Quarter – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Ganton Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Marshall Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Solar powered waving Queen – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Wardour Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Shelton Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Marks & Spencer – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Newburgh Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Bow Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Seven Dials – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Soho – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Marshall Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

King Street Oliver Sweeney – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Henrietta Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Lego portrait – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Conduit St – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Portabello Road – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Spitalfields – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Toward Commercial Road – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Talbot Road – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Henry Holland Duke St – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Selfridges – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Kensington Park Road – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Kensington Church Street – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Wapping – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Regent’s Canal Tow Path – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Enfield Suburban London – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

Uppingham Village Rutland – The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee June 3rd 2012
Photo: InkEatsMan

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5 thoughts on “Monarchy in the UK

  1. Ah yes…. how quintessentially British! ….. the Saxe-Coburg and Gotha dynasty!

    (Now rebranded as the ‘Windsors’ of course)

    Flags and fairy cakes for the peasants! Yay!

    • Thanks Verity, I have more! Am traveling at the moment but will look at the Time Capsule site when I get my next decent internet connection. However please feel free to use any as you wish. Cheers Paul. Currently walking in the countryside of Rutland!

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