By Lauren Crooks
A beacon will be lit over West Dunbartonshire as part of a range of activities and events marking the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee later this year.
The light – traditionally a symbol of hope – will be lit in unison with more than 1500 in other areas all over the United Kingdom at 9.45pm on Thursday 2 June.
In West Dunbartonshire, it will be positioned high over at ceremonies expected to take place at landmark Dumbarton Castle.
Alongside the ceremony, which marks Queen Elizabeth’s 70 years as Monarch, a programme of events for schools and Early Learning and Childcare Centres to participate in has also been created.
These include the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative, which will see a number of new trees planted in every educational establishment in the area; a Get Growing event which will encourage schools to sow, grow and share vegetables with their communities; and the West Dunbartonshire Council Big Jubilee Lunch, taking place between 5 and 9 June using food grown by pupils.
Other plans will see Council employees from the Instrumental Music Service perform a live selection of music in a West Dunbartonshire Park, on string, woodwind and brass instruments and West Dunbartonshire Jubilee Walks & Cycle Tours which will encourage pupils to visit areas of historic and natural significance. Children and young people will also be encouraged to get creative with art and poetry for the West Dunbartonshire Schools Queens Jubilee Poetry Competition and Exhibition, with winning entries put on display.
The Council has also announced that Friday 3 June will be a day of closure to honour the occasion.
Although the current councillors will have to be elected on May 5 prior to the big event, Bailie Denis Agnew, Convener of the Council’s Cultural Committee, said: “This will be a historic moment, as it is the first time any British monarch has celebrated a Platinum Jubilee, and so we are delighted to participate in the celebrations. Whether it is taking in live music in our parks or helping local schools grow vegetables, we want all residents to have the opportunity to enjoy the event.”
Councillor Jonathan McColl, Vice Convener, added: “As a Council we have committed to an ambitious target of being net zero by 2045. Participating in the Queen’s Green Canopy Initiative of planting more trees around West Dunbartonshire educational establishments will leave a legacy which supports that vision.”
Her Majesty the Queen at the opening of Vale of Leven Hospital in Alexandria.