Alnwick town councillors are to look at possible events to take place this year to celebrate the Queen’s 90th birthday, while a clean-up of the town is to take place in March ahead of the tourist season.
The Queen celebrates turning 90 in 2016 and a number of events are planned during the year, including on her actual birthday on April 21.
A weekend of events to celebrate her birthday and, unofficially, the Duke of Edinburgh’s 95th birthday, will take place on the weekend of June 10 to 12; the Queen’s official birthday is always marked on a Saturday in June.
This will include a large street party in the Mall in London, to which 10,000 people will be invited.
Communities across the country are being encouraged to have events or street parties to mark the occasion.
At the latest meeting of Alnwick Town Council, members agreed that the council’s recreation and amenities committee should start looking at events which could be held in Alnwick.
The town-council clerk suggested that it would be useful to contact other communities in north Northumberland to see what they are planning for June.
On a related note, Clean for The Queen is a campaign launched by Country Life magazine in partnership with Keep Britain Tidy and a number of other sponsors to clean up Britain in time for the Queen’s 90th birthday.
The campaign is looking for volunteers across the country to tidy their local areas during a special clean-up weekend on March 4 to 6.
In previous years, Alnwick Town Council has organised clean-ups around that time as a chance to tidy the town ahead of Easter and the start of the visitor/tourist season.
The clerk, Bill Batey, pointed out that March 6 is Mothering Sunday, which may have an impact on turn-out for any clean-up event.
He also explained that Sunday is the only viable day due to the difficulties of cleaning and tidying the town centre when it is full of people and cars on Saturday or Friday, which also has risk-management implications.
Therefore, councillors agreed that it would be more sensible to hold a town clean-up event on Sunday, March 20 – the last weekend before Easter and the start of the school holidays.
Coun Ken Moore asked if the use of Northumberland County Council’s road and footpaths sweepers could be requested for the event.