• Mon. May 20th, 2024

Silver Jubilee parties celebrated Queen’s 25 years on the throne


Sep 18, 2022

Many readers will remember seeing or perhaps even meeting our beloved Queen during her many visits to Oxfordshire over the years.

But there were many more occasions when we were able to celebrate in her absence, such as in 1977 when she marked 25 years on the throne.

It wasn’t just in Oxford that families partied – events were held throughout the county that summer as royal fever gripped the nation.

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Picture 1 was taken at a party for children living in flats in Butler Close, off Woodstock Road, Oxford.

The Oxford Mail reported: “Many neighbours got to know each other for the first time when they organised a tea and fancy dress party.

“There was a strange selection of characters – everyone from a pirate to a clown and even a sheikh turned up.”

All 265 pupils at Harebell First School at Blackbird Leys, Oxford, joined the celebrations in colourful outfits, many featuring nursery rhyme and TV characters. Among them were Robin Harris and Terry Frame, in Picture 2, as Punch and Judy.

Oxford Mail: Photo: Oxford Mail Photo: Oxford Mail

The children’s party in Picture 3 was due to be held outside their homes in Mead Way and Benmead Road, Kidlington.

It had to be moved indoors at the last minute to North Kidlington Primary School because of heavy rain, but no worries – they all remained in happy mood and as you can see, had a great time.

Oxford Mail: Photo: Oxford Mail Photo: Oxford Mail

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The mayor of Bicester, John Hollis, left in Picture 4, helped distribute jubilee crowns to the 350 pupils at St Edburg’s School in the town.

He told the children: “I hope you do not spend your crowns but keep them as a reminder of our Queen’s 25 years on the throne.”

Oxford Mail: Photo: Oxford Mail Photo: Oxford Mail

Families at Wantage can be seen in Picture 5 in their natty headgear and with their special cake at St John’s Hall, West Hill.

Oxford Mail: Photo: Oxford Mail Photo: Oxford Mail

While children at Standlake, near Witney, in Picture 6 went underground to mark the jubilee.

Nicholas Macefield and Tracey Blackman, watched by fellow pupils, buried a jubilee box in the school grounds containing souvenirs, tapes, photographs, copies of our sister paper, The Oxford Times, and 1977-style tea bags.

Oxford Mail: Photo: Oxford Mail Photo: Oxford Mail

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The idea was for future pupils to dig up the box in 25 years – a map was drawn and stored to help the diggers of 2002.

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This story was written by Andy Ffrench, he joined the team more than 20 years ago and now covers community news across Oxfordshire.

Get in touch with him by emailing: Andy.ffrench@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter @OxMailAndyF