Next year, Queen Elizabeth II will become the first ever British monarch to mark a Platinum Jubilee, following her Sapphire Jubilee in 2017 and Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
This is everything you need to know about the Platinum Jubilee happening in 2022.
When is the Platinum Jubilee in 2022?
While Saturday 6 February technically marks the date that the Queen ascended to the throne, it also is the anniversary of the death of her father, King George VI, and therefore is known as a date the Queen does not wish to celebrate.
Instead, the Platinum Jubilee will take place on Friday 3 June, 2022, much like the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilees, with the summer month additionally offering a better chance of good weather.
The date will celebrate the Queen’s 70th anniversary on the throne, and she will be the first ever British monarch to mark a Platinum Jubilee. Queen Elizabeth II became the longest reigning British monarch on 9 September 2015, when she surpassed the previous record set by her great-great-grandmother Victoria.
On 6 February 2017, the Queen also became the first British monarch to celebrate a Sapphire Jubilee, which commemorated 65 years on the throne.
The Royal Family site explains that “royal Jubilees are an occasion to celebrate the life and reign of a monarch, and are significant events which are celebrated around the world”.
Will there be an extra bank holiday?
At the end of 2020, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden announced that the UK will mark the Queen’s 70th anniversary on the throne with “a blockbuster weekend of celebrations”.
The May Bank Holiday Weekend in 2022 will be shifted to Thursday 2 June, and an additional Bank Holiday on Friday 3 June will introduce a four day weekend to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
The Government says: “The four day celebrations will feature an extensive programme of events that mix the best of British ceremonial splendour and pageantry with cutting edge artistic and technological displays.
“These will be interspersed with the traditional nationwide fanfare and celebrations.”
Plans for the Platinum Jubilee are being developed in conjunction with “some of the UK’s leading creative minds, event organisers and world class digital design companies” according to the Government.
Dowden said: “Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee will be a truly historic moment - and one that deserves a celebration to remember.
“We can all look forward to a special, four-day Jubilee weekend, when we will put on a spectacular, once-in-a-generation show that mixes the best of British ceremonial splendour with cutting edge art and technology. It will bring the entire nation and the Commonwealth together in a fitting tribute to Her Majesty’s reign.”
What events are planned for the Platinum Jubilee?
From Thursday 2 June to Sunday 5 June, a whole host of events have been planned to celebrate the Queen’s seven decade reign.
Events planned include:
- Trooping the Colour, also known as the Queen’s birthday parade
- Lighting beacons across the UK
- A service of Thanksgiving
- The Queen attending the Derby at Epsom Downs
- Platinum Party at the Palace
- The Big Platinum Jubilee Lunch
- Platinum Jubilee Pageant
Will there be a commemorative medal?
In keeping with tradition, a Platinum Jubilee medal will be awarded to those who work in the public services, including representatives of the Armed Forces, the emergency services and the prison services.
The Government states that the “design and qualifying criteria for the Platinum Jubilee medal will be announced in due course”.
Previously, eligibility for a Jubilee medal included criteria like the completion of a certain number of years’ service and being in “effective service” from a set date.
How are people being asked to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee?
Communities, schools, gardeners and companies are being asked to plant trees in an initiative to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee in 2022.
The Queen’s Green Canopy scheme was launched in order to encourage people to plant trees from the start of the tree planting season in October 2021 through to the end of 2022, to mark her 70 years on the throne.
Schools and communities are able to apply for three million free saplings from the Woodland Trust as part of the project.
The Prince of Wales was joined by the Queen for the first jubilee tree planting in the grounds of Windsor earlier this year. In a video message to launch the initiative, Charles urged people to join him to “plant a tree for the jubilee - in other words, a tree-bilee”.
Charles said: “It is absolutely vital that more of the right species of trees are planted, in the right places, and that more woodlands, avenues, hedgerows and hedgerow trees and urban planting schemes are established, whilst ensuring that we also protect and sustain what we already have.
“Whether you are an individual hoping to plant a single sapling in your garden, a school or community group planting a tree, a council, charity or business intending to plant a whole avenue of trees or a farmer looking to create new hedgerows, everyone across the country can get involved.”
The scheme has been backed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who said: “Our trees stand at the frontline of our fight against climate change and by sustaining our beautiful countryside for generations to come.
“The Queen’s Green Canopy is a fitting tribute to her majesty’s years of service to this country. I urge everyone to get involved and ‘plant a tree for the jubilee’.”
The Queen has herself planted more than 1,500 trees around the world during her reign.
Woodland Trust chief executive Darren Moorcroft said: “There is no more fitting way to celebrate Her Majesty’s jubilee than through striving to increase and protect our native tree cover.
“The last year has emphasised the central role that trees and woods play in the life of the nation.
“We need more projects like this, giving people access to our natural heritage, opportunities to do something positive for the environment, and helping to safeguard it for our children in the face of a combined climate and nature crisis.”