COUNTDOWN TO THAMES DIAMOND JUBILEE PAGEANT
Details of 1,000 vessels revealed Repertoire for all 10 music barges announced Large parts of Central London riverside and bridges pedestrianised Battersea Park tickets on sale to the public The organisers of the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant have today released the final details of the 1,000-boat tribute to Her Majesty The Queen’s 60-year reign. The largest public event of the Diamond Jubilee weekend and potentially the largest live public event ever held in London, the Pageant will take place on Sunday 3rd June on the river from above Battersea to below Tower Bridge. The flotilla itself will be over seven miles long and – including mustering, dispersal and the avenue of sail – will include some 25 miles of Thames river bank. The flotilla will pass under all 13 Central London river crossings, from Battersea Bridge to Tower Bridge, and will take at least 75 minutes to pass any given point. This unique spectacle, inspired by a rich history and tradition of entertainment and theatre on the Thames, will include up to 20,000 participants on the water and up to a million spectators on the river banks and public spaces. The major broadcasters expect the global audience to number in the billions. Details of the boats participating in the Pageant are published at www.thamesdiamondjubileepageant.org. Lord Salisbury, Chairman of the Thames Diamond Jubilee Foundation, said: “The Pageant on 3rd June will be a unique occasion to celebrate a British Monarch. Our organising team, the hundreds who have entered their boats, the thousands on the river, the hundreds of thousands lining the banks and the many hundreds of millions watching on television, will want to pay a fitting tribute to The Queen for her 60 years of service. The Pageant will be an event that will fulfil this ambition.” Also revealed today is the final repertoire for the ten floating music barges that will take their places throughout the flotilla. The headlines are: Royal Jubilee Bells : Peal of bells travelling the length of the central London flotilla route, with riverside Churches returning the peals as the floating belfry passes by Academy of Ancient Music: Handel’s Water Music and Music for Royal Fireworks Herald Fanfare Trumpeters : Six trumpeters from Her Majesty’s Royal Marines perform trumpet herald fanfares to each of the Thames bridges to herald the arrival of The Queen The Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines Plymouth: Nautical airs and sea shanties including Royal Salute, Gibraltar, Jolly Roger, Pirates of the Caribbean and Fantasia of British Sea Songs The Jubilant Commonwealth Choir: 13 traditional folk songs sung by a choir drawn from across the Commonwealth countries Shree Muktajeevan Pipe Band and Dhol Ensemble: Indian-Scottish pipe band playing eight Bollywood tunes and 19 traditional melodies The New Water Music : Eleven of the UK’s foremost composers have been commissioned to write short pieces of inspirational music for the Pageant inspired by Handel’s Water Music, to be collectively called The New Water Music The Mayor’s Jubilee Band: Brass band of young musicians playing a new commission by Rachel Portman and a range of popular music including famous show tunes Rhythm on the River : An ensemble of 16 musicians and three vocalists led by renowned composer Guy Barker performing 12 songs composed during The Queen’s reign including music from The Beatles London Philharmonic Orchestra and the Royal College of Music Chamber Choir: Playing a repertoire of patriotic music including Crown Imperial, Land of my Fathers, Flower of Scotland, Rule Britannia, Land of Hope and Glory, I Vow to Thee My Country and, of course, the National Anthem The London Philharmonic Orchestra will also be playing pieces relevant to buildings it passes en route, including the theme music to the James Bond films as they pass the MI6 building and the march from the 1955 film The Dambusters as it passes the RAF Memorial. Details of the full repertoire for all ten music barges are included in the news section of our website. Pageant Master Adrian Evans , said: “Excitement is rising as 20,000 individual participants prepare to take to the river on 1,000 vessels. It’s a massive production with some demanding challenges, but it’s going to be an utterly spectacular Jubilee celebration. I am especially pleased to be able to confirm the wealth of musicians, singers, choristers, composers and conductors who will be taking to the Thames aboard the ten music barges to entertain the viewing and listening public.” It is the intention of the Pageant organisers to return the River Thames and its immediate environs to the public for the day, with large parts of the central London embankments and many central London bridges effectively pedestrianised. A detailed interactive map is now available at: www.thamesdiamondjubileepageant.org This map also contains the location of up to 50 large viewing screens in London, designated areas for disabled access, historic landmarks, public transport information and public conveniences. For more specific travel and traffic information, the public are advised to visit www.tfl.gov.uk/diamondjubilee. Driving in central London on Sunday 3 June is not recommended. Organisers have made bridges available to the riparian London Boroughs for allocation to local residents and also to a number of charities associated with the Pageant. These initiatives have helped organisers to make secure all or part of every bridge as The Queen and the Royal Squadron passes underneath. The precise bridge arrangements are: Battersea and Chelsea bridges will be open for pedestrians from 0700hrs until early evening. Both bridges will be closed to traffic and are expected to be very crowded. Albert Bridge will be closed to all traffic and pedestrians starting from 0700hrs until early evening and is designated for invited guests from charities and the riparian boroughs. Tower Bridge will be closed to all traffic and pedestrians from 0700hrs until early evening and will host guests from the riparian boroughs as well as private events hosted by the City of London. Millennium Bridge and Jubilee footbridges will be closed and will host guests from the charities and riparian boroughs as well as members of the media
Southwark Bridge will be closed to pedestrians, but not to traffic.
Lambeth, Westminster and Blackfriars bridges will be closed to traffic and pedestrians, but each will have north and south facing viewing screens, with both ends of each bridge open to the public. However, members of the public will need to be counted on to the bridge to comply with capacity and subject to bag searches to maintain security.
While some bridges are open to moving pedestrians and traffic, only members of the public, invited by the charities and the riparian boroughs, who have been security accredited in advance, will be able to use them as spectator areas.
The bridges and riverside areas along the Pageant route will be decorated with flags and bunting for the event. The Pageant organisers are encouraging riverside properties – both business and residential – to ‘dress’ their buildings with Jubilee decorations, to add to the celebratory atmosphere on the day.
Vessel mustering will take place from mid-morning between Hammersmith and Putney Bridges. Boats at the head of the flotilla will be passing under Putney Bridge at around 14:30. The Pageant will officially start at around 14:40 as the Royal Jubilee Bells start ringing and the floating belfry slips its moorings in the Battersea Park area and takes its position as the lead vessel. Immediately behind them is the man-powered section with 265 rowed vessels including Gloriana , rowed by 18 oarsmen and women including Sir Matthew Pinsent, Sir Steve Redgrave, Paralympic champions and disabled British Servicemen. The man-powered section ‘toss oars’ in salute to The Queen as they pass her.
Her Majesty The Queen and other senior members of the Royal family will embark the Royal Barge – the Spirit of Chartwell – at Cadogan Pier at 14:30; they join the flotilla immediately behind the man-powered section at 15:00. They will have travelled from Chelsea Harbour on board HMY Britannia’s R oyal Barge attended by Paul Ludwig, The Queen’s Bargemaster. The rest of the flotilla, all motor powered sections, will form up behind The Queen, travelling at a speed of four knots. At 15:00, bells in churches along the riverside – and up and down the country – will ring out in response to the Royal Jubilee Bells in their floating belfry.
The Royal Barge will halt when she reaches the Royal Naval Research base, HMS President, just down river of Tower Bridge at around 16:15, and Her Majesty The Queen will watch the rest of the flotilla as it floats past. The bascules of Tower Bridge will open in salute and will stay open for the rest of the Pageant.
The Pageant will be brought to a close with a fitting finale at around 17:30 as the last vessel in the flotilla, the Symphony, carrying members of the London Philharmonic Orchestra and the Royal College of Music Chamber Choir and playing rousing patriotic music, floats between the historic boats in the Avenue of Sail and passes under Tower Bridge.
The vessels in the flotilla will disperse and their passengers disembark as far down river as Greenwich and West India Docks, where large crowds are also expected to greet the many captains and crews as they reach their final destination. On the river itself there will be around 190 safety vessels including police boats, Port of London Authority (PLA) launches, and fire and rescue boats. A ‘hard shoulder’ will be used on the day to enable these safety vessels to move quickly and easily alongside the flotilla and be swiftly on hand to deal with any incidents, which – as with other Thames events – the authorities and Pageant Master fully anticipate. Safety issues have been paramount to the organisers’ planning of this complex operation and have involved the expertise of many different organisations including the PLA, the Metropolitan Police, London Traffic Police, Transport for London, RNLI and MCA. There will be 5,500 members of the Metropolitan Police and 7,000 of the Foundation’s own stewards on duty to ensure that everyone involved with the Pageant, from participants to viewing public and riverside residents, will be safe and able to make the most of this unique and historic occasion. Rehearsals and briefings continue to take place to ensure everyone involved in the Pageant is as prepared as possible for all eventualities.
Michael Lockett, Chief Executive of the Thames Diamond Jubilee Foundation said: “We have had invaluable help from these organisations and I would like to thank them for their dedication and diligence in every aspect of this wonderful Royal tribute. The hard work of the team means that this – probably the biggest street and river party in the nation’s history – will be a well organised and properly policed event for everyone to relish and enjoy”.
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