It's been a long time in the making, but as the weathermen forecast sunny skies (though not quite as hot as recently) will reign over our good Queen's Diamond Jubilee, this weekend promises to bring its own rewards for all the hard work and effort being put in by the Croydon community.
A brief round up of what's happening will allow you to squeeze as much out of the celebrations as you can. With over 130 council applications for street parties - 20 of them being held in in parks and public spaces - if you're not already involved in one, you can be sure there'll be something near you.
On Saturday June 2nd Croydon Male Voice Choir will be performing a special Diamond Jubilee concert at the Fairfield Halls from 7.30pm. The choir will be joined by ten others coming from as far afield as Yorkshire, Manchester and Cornwall and will bring together over 400 voices. For this Jubilee celebration this collaboration is hoping to rival Last Night at the Proms!
On Sunday 3rd June Croydon Minster will be holding a choral evensong in honour of the Queen. Starting at 6.30pm all are welcome to join in this reflective service, in which music plays a leading role.
From the 2nd to the 5th June there will be celebrations galore at Centrale Shopping Centre. Fantastic family fun planned includes summer disco dancing, craft workshops and singalongs. There is also a Jubilee parade in the Central Atrium. Head to North End for free donkey rides and stilt walkers who will be issuing 'Ration Books' (far from containing 'rationing' you will find special offers available from selected Centrale stores!)
On the Lower Mall you can put on your dancing shoes from 12noon to 3pm and join in with dance sessions with Dance Live. Try your hand at dance styles from the 50's 60's and 70's (or like me, just try and remember them from your youth!) On Saturday there will be performances from J's Dance Factory at 12.30pm and 2.30pm.
And on Monday 4th June you will get the chance to meet Her Majesty, accompanied by her favourite Royal corgi, when she pays a special visit from midday until 3.00pm. OK, it MIGHT just be a look-a-like , but it promises to be a memorable experience just the same!
On Monday 4th May a significant total of 2,012 beacons will be lit across the United Kingdom, as well as in a number of Commonweath Realms and four in the United States. Beacons will also be lit at the four highest mountains in the United Kingdom in aid of different charities:
The Queen will light a National Beacon in London at 10.30pm.
Croydon's beacon will be lit on the roof of the council's Taberner House in the simultaneous lighting ceremony across the country from 10pm to 10.30pm. Search light beacons will also light up the night sky in Norwood Grove and Coulsdon Memorial Park.
At the conclusion of what is a historical weekend of National celebration, these lights will shine across the land in honour of our treasured Monarch.
Here at thebestof Croydon we wish you all a fabulous Jubilee weekend, raise our glasses and say God Save the Queen!