Jubilee poster of 1897 inspires Harleston event organisers in 2012

Jubilee event organisers have discovered a poster advertising the Queen's Diamond Jubilee of 1897 and are using it as an inspiration for their upcoming celebrations – but with a 1950s-'60s twist.

The poster, for Redenhall with Harleston and Mendham, advertises a programme of activities on June 22, 1897, including, a church service, bands and 'sports'. The sports include best decorated lady's bicycle, best comic costume on a bicycle, slow bicycle (last is winner), wheelbarrow race, sack race and egg and spoon race.

Representatives from several groups in Harleston and other volunteers gathered at the Swan Hotel on Thursday to discuss this year's event which will take place on June 4.

The Rev Norman Steer said: 'The Queen's Jubilee is something very special. So let's make this such a good event that the children will remember it when they are 100 years old.'

Among the ideas suggested was a parade, led by a brass band, around the streets and ending at the recreation ground for a church service, picnic, community sing-song and music from the 1950s and '60s, such as Mitch Miller's Yellow Rose of Texas and Lonnie Donegan.

Other attractions include a Memorabilia Marquee full of items from the 1950s and '60s, including old record players, and a display of vintage tractors plus a photography exhibition and the screening of old footage of the Coronation procession through Harleston.

Also proposed were fancy dress competitions, best dressed pushchair or mobility aid (such as scooters or walking sticks), 'messy church' fun for children, a shop window competition, children's band and a big band playing jazz, and possible fairground rides.

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It is also expected that the event will coincide with the official opening of the 'green gym' on the recreation ground. In the meantime, a cake and produce stall will be held on March 24 to raise funds for the celebrations.

Anyone who would like to help, offer ideas or who can play a brass instrument, is asked to call Ruth on 01379 852953.

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