RESIDENTS threw caution to the weather to hold hundreds of street parties across the borough to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
The rain did nothing to dampen the spirits of partygoers across the county who dug out the bunting to raise a glass to the Queen.
Some 300 plus residents from Kent View Recreation Ground, Vange celebrated by having a picnic party. Basildon Mayor Mo Larkin and the Labour Deputy Leader Byron Taylor and his family attended to give their support.
Resident Karen Jacobs, 49 praised the event saying: “It was a fantastic fun filled day. We had so many residents come out and the Mayor really lent her support, it was fantastic! The entire day was free thanks to Angie King who organised it all and a team of various residents. The Mayor really doesn’t get the recognition she deserves she came down and really joined in and the residents were thrilled to meet her! “
Canvey Island Town Council got into the swing of things by holding a Big Jubilee Lunch at Labworth Park on the seafront.
Cllr Peter Greig, Chairman of Canvey Island Town Council commented: “The Canvey Big Jubilee Lunch is a celebration event for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and is an opportunity for the seafront traders to kick-start the summer season on Canvey seafront.”
The Salvation Army played a musical part and the band from Hadleigh Temple provided a programme of music under Deputy Bandmaster Keith Johnston with Major Geoff Ashdown compering.
The Canvey Community Choir then joined the band to present a short songs of praise, led by the commanding officer of Canvey Salvation Army, Captain Susannah Hart.
The day concluded with a mini proms featuring the band and the choir, and included ‘Land of Hope and Glory’ and ‘Jerusalem’. It was led by Major Ashdown who changed into bow tie and frock coat.
Southend High Street was festooned with patriotic red, white and blue bunting as the town honoured Her Majesty’s 60 years as monarch.
And to commemorate the occasion Southend-on-Sea Borough Council presented every infant, primary and special school pupil in the borough with a commemorative medal.
Most of Southend’s 14,000 children have already received the gold-coloured medals and their red, white and blue ribbons.
The Council authorised 65 temporary road closures to facilitate street parties which took place across the town from the 2 to the 4 June.
And for those who like to tap their feet along to some patriotic music a programme of free concerts were staged at the Priory Park Bandstand with music from The Tilbury Brass Academy, Tequila Swing and the Becontree Brass Band.
Executive Councillor for Culture and Tourism, Derek Jarvis, said: “This is likely to be the only Diamond Jubilee celebration that any of us will take part in.
“It really is something for us all to celebrate and share in together and the programme of events we have arranged has something for everyone.
“The school children who receive the commemorative medals will be able to look at them in years to come and say ‘I was there’. They’re lovely keepsakes for a momentous occasion.
“It’s wonderful to see how many street parties have been organised and the Council is delighted to have been able to help smooth the way for them by agreeing temporary road closures.”
As well as the Diamond Jubilee events the Council also launched an appeal for funds to purchase a specially-commissioned bust of Her Majesty.
The bust, which will cost around £20,000, will be placed on public display outside the Council Chamber in the Civic Centre.
Any local organisations, businesses or individuals who wish to make a contribution can do so by visiting www.southend.gov.uk/jubilee.