Welcome to our very special Jubilee Edition!

We will be celebrating at GXCA with afternoon teas, and more and I hope you will be able to join one of the events with friends and family. Get those glad rags out and sport the red, white, and blue! I also thought it gives me the opportunity to share some of the facts and background to why we celebrate this particular event. Jubilee is also not a word many of us are used to saying though I was reminded of Cliff Richard’s Eurovision song entry ‘Congratulations’ which used the word ‘jubilations’ which was a highly uncommon word to use in a pop song. The lyrics however did make us sing along!

Though the concept of the Jubilee began in biblical times, today the term is most closely associated with the Royal Family, and the ceremony and spectacle which the term symbolises. Few British monarchs have achieved reigns of 50 years, and Golden Jubilees are very rare. There are few records of how – if at all – Henry III, Edward III and James VI and I celebrated their 50-year milestones. The first British monarch to mark 50 years on the throne in a significant way was George III, followed by Queen Victoria.

The Queen’s reign has been punctuated by an unprecedented series of milestones. Her Majesty’s jubilees and birthdays have provided cause for celebration and reflection throughout the remarkable years since her Accession. Such events help reinforce the Sovereign’s role as a focus for national identity and unity as people across the Commonwealth come together to mark an important occasion for their Head of State. Royal Jubilees are therefore an occasion to celebrate the life and reign of a Monarch and are significant events which are celebrated around the world. Of course, we all like a good souvenir to remind us of a particular celebration and the Jubilee is no exception!

Commemorative souvenirs have been a popular way of marking Royal events such as Jubilees for the last three centuries. The earliest known English commemorative items date from the Restoration of Charles II as king in 1660, followed by his Coronation in 1661 and wedding in 1662. The arrival of new manufacturing methods in the last 250 years made such items more affordable by the general public. Popular items which have been used to commemorate Jubilees past and present include coins, stamps, and ceramics.

Platinum Jubilee Beacons: The United Kingdom’s long tradition of celebrating Royal Jubilees, Weddings, and Coronations with the lighting of beacons will continue for the Platinum Jubilee. A beacon chain, once used as a tool for communication, has now become a symbol of unity across towns, borders, countries, and continents and is often the central point of focus for any outdoor gathering or celebration. birthday. Over 1,500 beacons will be lit throughout the United Kingdom, Channel Islands, Isle of Man and UK Overseas Territories. The Principal beacon, involving The Tree of Trees (a 21m high ‘tree’ constructed of 350 smaller trees), will be lit in a special ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

Now for some little-known facts about the Queen!

Answers below.

1.How many corgis has she owned?

2. Can you name any of the unusual animals she has received as gifts from Brazil, Cameroon and Canada?

3. Does the Queen require a passport and a driving licence?

4. Who designed the Queen’s Coronation dress and how many designs were submitted?

5. Which prime minister who served the Queen also served during the reign of another Queen?

6. When did the Queen send her first email?

7.As part of the London 2012 Olympics opening ceremony, whom did she helicopter in with to the Olympic Stadium?

8. How many congratulatory cards has the Queen sent to those celebrating their 100th birthday?

9. When did she send her first tweet?

10. To end on an alcoholic note what is the Queen’s favourite cocktail?


1.She is said to have owned more than 30 corgis in her lifetime

2.During her reign, Her Majesty has received many gifts including a variety of live animals. The more unusual animals were placed in the care of zoos, among them jaguars and sloths from Brazil, an elephant from Cameroon and two black beavers from Canada.

3.As British passports and driving licences are issued in The Queen’s name, she is not required to have either – a privilege held by her

4.British couturier Sir Norman Hartnell designed the Queen’s Coronation dress. He submitted nine different designs and Her Majesty accepted the eighth.

5.Sir Winston Churchill. Her Majesty’s first Prime Minister became a Member of Parliament during the reign of The Queen’s great-great grandmother, Queen Victoria.  

6.March 1976 during a visit to the Royal Radar Establishment, Malvern, now known as the Royal Signals and Radar Establishment. The email was sent to the US Secretary of Defence to formally open the UK/US collaboration on military programming language

7.Secret agent James Bond escorted The Queen from Buckingham Palace to the Olympic Stadium by helicopter before they both parachuted into the event. 

8.The Queen has sent over 300,000 congratulatory cards to people celebrating their 100th birthdays

9.In 2014 she sent her first tweet and in 2019 published her first Instagram post

10. A gin and Dubonnet cocktail! Cheers!!