The Queen’s Jubilee celebrations begin amid questions about the future of the monarchy – National | The Canadian News

After two years of COVID-19 lockdowns and Brexit political turmoil, Britons are taking to the streets to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, the first for a British monarch.

The momentous occasion comes as a world tired of lockdowns begins to venture out once more, hungry for the familiar sights and sounds of community celebrations.

In the UK, the Platinum Jubilee celebrations are an additional four-day holiday where thousands of gatherings, both large and small, range from festivities on The Mall to backyard luncheons and village squares finally blossoming after a long, hard winter.

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Queen’s Platinum Jubilee: Canadians camp out to get front row seats to ‘spectacular’ parade

The colorful parade known as Trooping the Color on Thursday marked the official start of the celebrations, as well as the Queen’s official birthday. Thousands of officers and soldiers marched in orderly lines through The Mall, filled to bursting at the edges with onlookers who thronged to catch a glimpse.

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After several days of characteristically British rain and clouds, the sun came out as people streamed through the streets of central London. Those who managed to snag a spot along the high street got to see not one, but two future queens as the ceremonies progressed.

Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, and Kate Middleton, officially known as Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, shared a carriage with the three Cambridge children: George, Charlotte and Louis.

The parade was briefly interrupted at one point when a man ran in front of the horses, according to The Associated Press.

The police quickly removed the individual.

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Police officers remove a man who got in the way of the royal procession on The Mall, London, ahead of the Trooping the Color ceremony in London, Thursday June 2, 2022, the first of four days of celebrations to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee. Events over a long bank holiday weekend in the UK are meant to celebrate the monarch’s 70 years of service. (Andrew Matthews/PA via AP)

Andrew Matthews/PA via AP

All eyes were also on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, as the royal family gathered to watch the crowds outside and watch a Royal Air Force flyby, though Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex were not in attendance. that balcony.

Instead, Queen Elizabeth and her son, Prince Charles, greeted the thousands gathered outside from the balcony, joined by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge along with their children.

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As fighter jets and planes roared into the air, a group of them lined up in careful formation to mark the number 70, a tribute to seven decades on the throne celebrated with the Platinum Jubilee.

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British planes are arranged in a formation of 70 to mark the Platinum Jubilee.

Royal Air Force jets arrayed themselves in a formation of 70 as part of a flyby to mark the Platinum Jubilee on Thursday 2 June 2022.

Amanda Connolly/Global News

With the four-day bank holiday ahead, the celebrations are just getting started.

On June 3, there will be a thanksgiving service at St. Paul’s Cathedral, along with the Platinum Party at the Palace on June 4 and the Platinum Jubilee Parade on June 5.

Global News will have special coverage from the ground from London, UK on our website, social media and TV, including a full rundown showing the days of celebrations on June 5 at 2pm ET.

But amid the celebrations, questions remain about how the monarchy can remain relevant and what role it can or should play in Commonwealth countries.

Royals have been through a ‘reckoning’, says expert

Recent years have seen a “reckoning” for the British royal family, one expert has said.

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In an interview with Global News, broadcaster and journalist Afua Hagan said that the political turmoil of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson under fire for breaking COVID-19 rules, combined with frustration among people over the chaos at airports , is also “overshadowing” the event.

“And I also think the royal family has been through a reckoning in recent years. Prince Andrew, what happened to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle,” she said.

“And some Caribbean island nations are talking about removing the Queen as head of state. Barbados did. The Bahamas are also talking about it, and possibly Jamaica too. So I think right now, people are a little bit divided when it comes to the Royal Family,” Hagan added.

“I think there is a great affinity for the Queen across the country and across the Commonwealth, and I think it will continue. But I think when it comes to the mood in the country, 50 percent of the people are pretty cynical, and 50 percent of the people will hang the pennant.”

Click to play video: 'Queen's Platinum Jubilee: The Royal Family makes an appearance on the balcony after the parade'

Queen’s platinum jubilee: Royal family appear on the balcony after the parade

Queen’s platinum jubilee: Royal family appear on the balcony after the parade

Canadian royal commentator Edward Wang acknowledged that there have been questions about what role the monarchy can or should play in a modern world, but said the benefits are clear to him.

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Wang came to Canada as a child from China and said he grew to love the Queen while learning about her at school. He described her dedication and her service to her people as some of the key attributes that he so admires about her.

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Has the Commonwealth ‘run its course’? Platinum Jubilee raises questions about the future

He also said that the role he can play in intervening if an elected leader ever tries to subvert democracy makes the role of a constitutional monarch valuable compared to the alternative Republican model in countries like the US, noting on January 6 of 2021, attack on the United States Capitol as an example.

“We have the leader of the free world trying to subvert a new democratically elected president,” Wang said. “That is a situation that we would not have in countries like Canada and the United Kingdom in Australia, because we have a constitutional monarch who is above politics and that he can intervene if we have a rebellious prime minister who refuses to give up. Energy.”

“So that’s a great example of why we need the monarchy and why the monarchy is still relevant.”

Click to play video: 'Platinum Jubilee Celebrations'

Platinum Jubilee Celebrations

Platinum Jubilee Celebrations

Wang also pointed to the work that members of the royal family do without the political agenda that normally fuels the work of politicians.

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“So while I think politicians are always doing something to further their own political career or trying to see if they can influence the next election results, the Royal Family is doing things only for the good of society,” he said. “I think that’s why they remain relevant in terms of championing, for example, environmental and sustainability issues.”

But that may not be enough to endear the monarchy and royal family to a younger generation, Hagan said. She said there was a “missed opportunity” to bring Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, into the fold and reinvigorate the institution.

“I think a lot of young people now feel that if you have a difference then the Royal Family is not for you,” Hagan said.

“And a lot of young people think that they are different, so the royal family is not for them.”

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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