06 May 2022

Measures to ensure Queen’s comfort taken for thanksgiving service

06 May 2022

The Queen is expected to travel by car to the national service of thanksgiving celebrating the Platinum Jubilee and dispense with ceremonial elements like a coach to ensure her comfort.

St Paul’s Cathedral will host the service on the second day of the extended Bank Holiday weekend marking the 70-year reign of the Queen, who will not arrive by the Great West Door, at the top of a flight of steps, but by another entrance.

The changes mirror arrangements made for the monarch, who has mobility issues and sometimes walks with the aid of a stick, for events at Westminster Abbey where she has arrived via a door that shortens the distance to her seat.

A Buckingham Palace spokesperson said: “As you might expect, some adjustments have been made for the Queen’s comfort.

“There will be no ceremonial journey to St Paul’s and Her Majesty is expected to arrive at a different entrance than on previous occasions.”

A large number of members of the royal family are expected to attend the service on Friday June 3, which may be the only occasion the Duke of Sussex is seen at a Jubilee event, if he attends, along with the disgraced Duke of York.

The Queen outside St Paul’s Cathedral for the Silver Jubilee (File/PA) (PA Wire)

Harry has said in a recent interview he did not know if he will return to the UK to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, saying there are “security issues and everything else”.

The service will see one of the country’s largest bells, the Great Paul, rung during the service, the first time it will have been heard at a royal occasion.

The event will feature a new anthem by Judith Weir, Master of the Queen’s Music, that sets to music words from the third Chapter of the Book of Proverbs.

Bible readings, hymns and prayers to express thankfulness for the Queen’s reign, faith and service will also be heard by the congregation as the nation marks the monarch’s 70 years on the throne.

The Dean of St Paul’s, the Very Reverend Dr David Ison, said: “It is a great honour to hold a service of thanksgiving for the reign of Her Majesty the Queen and to celebrate her 70 years of service to the UK and the Commonwealth.

“We are also delighted to open a brand new exhibition documenting previous Jubilee celebrations across three centuries.

“From rich and beautiful textiles to treasured photographs and scrapbooks, the story emerges of the excitement and anticipation of each Jubilee celebration, and the unique role that St Paul’s holds in ceremonial occasions.”

Opening on May 25, the exhibition, Jubilee: St Paul’s, The Monarch And The Changing World, uses objects from the cathedral’s archive to tell the stories of royal jubilee celebrations spanning three centuries from King George III to the Queen’s Silver, Golden and Diamond Jubilees.

There will also be a community outreach music project, Choir for the Queen, which sees St Paul’s create dedicated learning resources to enable school children aged 4-15 from across the UK and around the world to share a video singing their favourite hymn as a musical gift for the monarch.

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