Written for Royal Central by Sydney Zatz
On 6 February, The Queen celebrated her Platinum Jubilee, marking the first monarch to hit the tremendous milestone. As the nation celebrates her Jubilee, the town of Knutsford is marking the beginning of its own celebration.
A commemorative tree was planted to mark the 70th anniversary of Her Majesty’s accession to the throne. Knutsford town mayor Cllr Stewart Gardiner joined councillors and other residents for a small ceremony at the council offices. This is the first royal event to be held in the town ahead of official celebrations in June.
Knutsford, just southwest of Manchester, picked a Magnolia ‘Elizabeth’ tree to celebrate the occasion. The fragrant tree will blossom with pale yellow, cup-shaped flowers some time this spring, just in time for Her Majesty’s 96th birthday on 20 April. On top of the planting near the council offices, Mayor Gardiner plans to plant a Jubilee tree at each school in town. Councillors are also hoping to run a competition for children to design a new piece of public art.
It is not known if the tree plantings are part of The Queen’s Green Canopy, a unique tree-planting initiative created in honour of the Jubilee. It has invited all across the nation to “Plant a Tree for the Jubilee.” People are encouraged to plant trees through the official planting season between October and March. Planting in honour of the program will then start again in October of this year and last until the end of the Jubilee year.
For The Queen’s 2012 Diamond Jubilee, there was a specially commissioned arch installed at the Library Gardens. The white metal arch featured two horses at either side of the curve with a crown at the top centre. It was finished off with the date 2012, E II R, and bunting flags in blue metal. Designed by Pickmere artist Christine Wilcox-Baker, the archway had six diamonds and six pennants, marking each decade The Queen had been on the throne at that time.
National celebrations are set to take place over a four-day bank holiday weekend from 2-5 June. In Knutsford, the town council will take part in a nationwide beacon lighting event on that Thursday, 2 June. The Knutsford Lions will host a Jubilee Fair on the heath of Friday, 3 June.