Jubilee: Ripon unites to celebrate 70-year reign

By Janet Harrison
Wednesday, 8th June 2022, 12:08 pm
Ripon Cathedral Platinum Jubilee service of thanksgiving.
Ripon Cathedral Platinum Jubilee service of thanksgiving.

Residents from around the Ripon area joined in celebrations of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee over four spectacular days.

From tea parties to services of thanks giving and tractor festivals, communities united in the city and villages around.

Ripon Cathedral last Thursday hosted a service for the county of North Yorkshire with the Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire, Mrs Johanna Ropner and the Dean of Ripon, the Very Rev John Dobson, the Archbishop of York and the Bishop of Leeds present.

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Tea at Ripon Cathedral. Picture: Clive Trewhitt.

Ripon City Band helped lead the worship along with Ripon Cathedral Choir. Seven candles were lit by representatives of different parts of the community in the region.

The Dean of Ripon, the Very Rev John Dobson said: “It was a huge privilege for the cathedral to host such an historic lieutenancy celebration for the people of North Yorkshire.

“Including people of all ages from many and varied communities, it certainly expressed a strong desire to send a clear message of gratitude to Her Majesty the Queen and to praise God for her.”

The following day the Cathedral hosted a Platinum Jubilee tea-party.

Ripon Cathedral Platinum Jubilee tea for invited guests from across the city and region.

Each guest was born in one of the years of Her Majesty the Queen’s reign and brought a plus one to this free event.

People were invited to apply and if more than one person applied to represent a year, lots were drawn. The party was attended by Mr Richard Compton DL, representing Her Majesty the Queen and guests came from across England and Scotland.

A band of helpers waited on tables including some of the cathedral’s choristers.

Bishop Monkton kicked off the Platinum Jubilee weekend with a community concert given by a choir developed on Zoom during the pandemic.

Tea at Ripon Cathedral. Picture: Clive Trewhitt.

The choir entertained an audience of 120 in the Village Hall, near Ripon, last Wednesday evening with a show entitled Seven Decades of Song with music from the 1940s to the present day.

“The choir grew out of the village’s Singing for Fun Group which had started just before the pandemic and which kept going through the Covid lockdowns by meeting on Zoom, “ said spokesman Colin Philpott.

“The show included a live rendition of a song called Lockdown, written during Covid by the village’s Jubilee Queen, Pauline Beecroft, to the tune of the Petula Clark 1960s hit Downtown.”

The following day, an estimated 400 people - more than half the population of Bishop Monkton - turned out for a village sports day and children’s games.

Jubilee Tea Party at Ripon Cathedral. Picture: Clive Trewhitt.

A host of other entertainment and displays were staged throughout the Platinum Jubilee weekend, including a display of villagers’ wedding dresses and wedding photos from throughout the Queen’s reign, festival flowers in the parish church, duck race and hog roast.

And events drew to a close on Sunday with a street party.

Colin added: “We reckon our street party on Sunday might have been the biggest in North Yorkshire in the sense of per head of population - almost 500 people out of a population of 750 sat down at tables laid out along the length of Main Street next to the beck in the village.

Holy Trinity Church, Ripon, was the venue for a spectacular tea party held last Thursday.

A spokesman said: “With over 150 guests, 20 volunteers and an array of entertainers, it was an outstanding success and one of the highlights of the celebrations across the city.”

The audience of friends, families and local people also included the residents of Abbeyfield House who made the short walk across the road.

One of the group, May Dawson, said: “What an amazing and memorable occasion it was, and so enjoyable.

“There was such a lot of work and effort put into it by so many volunteers – all so kind and helpful,”

The organiser of the event, Gloria Sturdy, was delighted with the sellout celebration and the number of volunteers who were quick to offer their help.

She added: “It’s so nice to catch up with long lost friends after the two years of Covid isolations.

“Holy Trinity has again started hosting our Thursday lunches and, as we hear in the media about such loneliness and isolation, we hope we enable people to feel loved and supported.”

Gloria also commended the immense contribution given to the tea party, and to the weekly lunches, by Rick Jones who owns Valentinos’ and The Water Rat in Ripon City.

Newby Hall staged the Tractor Fest for the first time in two years, with a three-day event to allow exhibitors and visitors to enjoy the Jubilee-themed event.

Boroughbridge staged a Great Afternoon Tea for the Jubilee the town’s Football Club to raise money for Harrogate-based charity Dementia Forward.

And Great Ouseburn Garden Festival, Boroughbridge welcomed visitors to take a wander through their villa and hosted music from Camerata Sonora and the Yorkshire Wolds Versatile Brass.

There was also a 1950s window trail and a TV screen with live coverage of the Platinum Jubilee Pageant.

Bishop Monkton's Jubilee street party.