Diamond Jubilee River Thames Flotilla spectacular

The Diamond Jubilee Weekend is finally upon us and there is much
excitement (and village, town & street parties!) up & down the country.
The highlight of the weekend, is the Flotilla taking place on the River Thames.
There are up to 1,000 vessels which will travel along the Thames, marking
Queen Elizabeth II’s 60 years on the throne. The flotilla, the largest such pageant
for 350 years, will range from rowing to military boats, including
the Spirit of Chartwell, which has been transformed over the last six months
from a river cruiser into a royal barge fit for a Queen!
I have blogged about the amazing work of British artist, Ann Carrington before, here.
Ann was asked to make a historic artwork for the Queen in celebration of her Diamond Jubilee. The Royal Jubilee banner will hang from the stern of the Royal Barge,
the Spirit of Chartwell as it makes its journey up the River Thames from Battersea to London Bridge on this momentous occasion - The Thames Diamond Jubilee procession.

The banner is embroidered with over half a million golden buttons and features the Coronation Crown (St. Edward's Crown) flanked by the lion and the unicorn - a reference to British Heraldry and the Royal Coat of Arms. Around the border, teased from metallic thread will be all the Coronations from William I in 1066 to Queen Elizabeth II in 1952.

One of the great traditions of London is the Pearly Kings and Queens who have been embellishing their magnificent suits with pearl buttons since the mid 19th century.
Their suits, hats and dresses handed down together with hereditary titles, are sewn
with symbols - anchors, crosses, stars, moons, suns, flowers, diamonds -
their distinctive costumes having sprung from the sinking of a big cargo ship in the
Thames carrying pearl-buttons from Japan in the 1860's.

"I like to think this art work dovetails two
very different Royal traditions whose histories
have both been shaped by the Royal River Thames."
Ann Carrington

For further info & photos on Ann Carringtons work, head over to her website here.
All photos courtesy of Ann Carringtons website.