Councils mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee with a focus on the environment and wellbeing
Creating a lasting legacy will be at the heart of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations at South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils.
As Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II marks 70 years on the throne, there will be a focus on the environment and community wellbeing in the official Platinum Jubilee events across the districts.
The Queen’s Green Canopy
The councils are asking residents to share with them pictures of the trees they have planted across the districts as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy. These images will go on display until spring next year on the councils’ websites and will create a record of where the trees are for years to come.
Following the launch of their new Tree Policy, this year the councils supported community tree planting projects on public land in Abingdon and Wallingford. To help reduce carbon emissions they are encouraging people across the district to get involved in planting trees in their local area and applying to plant trees on council land – to find out more visit southoxon.gov.uk/trees / whitehorsedc.gov.uk/trees.
Later in the year South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse will each install living sculptures. The final designs are yet to be decided but the statues will be created using grasses, vines, plants, or trees. Both districts will have a sculpture as a reminder of this special anniversary.
It is hoped that the sculptures will become a part of the natural landscape. They will reflect the councils’ committed work to tackle the climate emergency, and they will be placed in areas that the public can access.
In South Oxfordshire the location of the sculpture is to be confirmed, however, in the Vale of White Horse the living sculpture will be at the District Community Centre on Great Western Park in Didcot Garden Town.
There will be opportunities for residents to get involved with deciding what shape the final sculptures will be and what they will be made with. Once confirmed they will be created later in the year.
Opening of the District Community Centre
The District Community Centre in Didcot will have a special open day on Saturday 25 June to coincide with the Jubilee celebrations. Local community groups, council members and residents will be invited to a special event at the centre which is central to both districts.
The councils’ Active Communities team will lead a series of Platinum Jubilee walks with those who come along encouraged to wear red, white, and blue. They will take place throughout May and June this year, enabling residents to get to know others in their community and focussing on their wellbeing at the same time.
There will be walks in both districts and residents can find out more information on the council websites whitehorsedc.gov.uk/activecommunities and southoxon.gov.uk/activecommunities
Cllr Emily Smith, Leader of Vale of White Horse District Council said: “We wanted to pay tribute to Her Majesty on this very special occasion in a way that reflects our beliefs as a council. Encouraging our residents to plant a tree for the jubilee is a great way to get involved with the celebrations and help our climate at the same time.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing the street parties and events across the Vale and am hoping to join one of the Platinum Jubilee walks as well.”
Cllr David Rouane, Leader for South Oxfordshire District Council said: “Having a living sculpture created for our district is a wonderful legacy which will hopefully last for years to come and become a part of the local landscape.
“The special open day at the Community Centre on Great Western Park brings residents from both districts together as will the jubilee walks, and this feels like the perfect way to celebrate the Queen uniting people and our priorities of health and wellbeing for everyone.”
There is more information about the Platinum Jubilee across South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse, including details of the local road closures for street parties on the councils websites southoxon.gov.uk/platinumjubilee / whitehorsedc.gov.uk/platinumjubilee.