City celebrates to show off its royal connections

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LANCASTER hosts a five-day celebration of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in June to mark its many Royal connections.

This year’s Lancaster Unlocked festival, which is entitled Royal Lancaster and runs from June 1-5, has kings and queens as its theme to coincide with the national jubilee celebrations.

Among highlights are a Medieval re-enactment and beacon lighting at Lancaster Castle; Music for a Royal Occasion and a Big Lunch at Lancaster Priory when teddy bears will be parachuted from the church tower; and trumpeters playing from the spire of Lancaster Cathedral.

There’ll be a House of Tudor Jubilee Festival; drama performances with a Royal twist; talks and guided tours; a photographic exhibition; and even a musket and drill session.

Family events include Royal themed storytelling, craft sessions, workshops and a screening of The Princess Bride.

For general festival enquiries, contact Lancaster Visitor Information Centre on 01524 582394 or visit www.lancasterunlocked.co.uk.

Participating venues/organisations are: Lancaster Library, the Grand Theatre, Market Square, The Dukes, Lancaster Maritime Museum, Lancaster Castle, St John’s Church, St Peter’s Cathedral, the Judges Lodgings Museum, Lancaster Priory Church, Lancaster City Museum, the Three Mariners and The Storey.

As well as being monarch for 60 years, the Queen has also been Duke of Lancaster for six decades.

The origin of the Duchy of Lancaster goes back almost seven centuries to the reign of King Henry III and, in her capacity as Duke of Lancaster, the Queen owns Lancaster Castle.

Since King John held court at Lancaster Castle in 1206, there have been 22 Royal visits. The Queen has visited the castle three times, most recently in 1999.

It is 75 years since the Queen’s father – King George VI – gave Lancaster city status on his Coronation Day in 1937. For general festival enquiries, contact Lancaster Visitor Information Centre on 01524 582394 or visit {{http:// www.lancasterunlocked.co.uk ww.lancasterunlocked.co.uk}.