Silver Jubilee

The Parish Council and the RCA produced a Souvenir Programme to mark Queen’s Silver Jubilee.

A copy of the Souvenir Programme for the Coronation of Her Majesty the Queen in 1953 suggested not only the idea of a Silver Jubilee Programme but also the theme. The central feature of that Souvenir was ‘A short history of the Parish of Rowlands Castle by F. O’B. Adams, village sub postmaster, 1936-60, now living in retirement in Liss Forest.

Looking upon Coronations and Jubilees as historical landmarks, this Souvenir adds to a revised reprint of the ‘Short History’, a word picture of Rowlands Castle in Jubilee year. On the occasion of future landmarks in history a copy of this Souvenir may be unearthed and someone may be sufficiently interested to bring the story up to date and again project it into the future.

Editorial: Published by a joint committee of the Parish Council and the Rowlands Castle Association. Cover design by Mr. Tom Levett

Golden Jubilee

In 2002, a tree was planted on the south side of The Green, to commemorate the Golden Jubilee 0f Queen Elizabeth II.

Diamond Jubilee

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee was celebrated by the whole country over four days in June 2012. Earlier that year the Parish Council started a collaboration with other village groups to coordinate the village celebrations and to circulate information from the Department of Media, Culture and Sport about the commemorative use of royal names and titles.

Rowlands Castle Diamond Jubilee Celebrations Group, RCDJCG

A group of villagers formed RCDJCG with the objective to organise social events to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and recommend commemorative features thereafter subject to funding. The team consisted of a Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and included representatives from the Parish Council, the RCA, the Women’s lnstitute, the Historical Society and local churches, together with other village residents.

The RCDJCG produced a trifold leaflet outlining all the events that would take place over the jubilee weekend.

The Celebrations

On Saturday 2nd June it may have been raining in London, but in Rowlands Castle the sun shone, as almost everyone in the village turned out to enjoy the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations. There was a vintage carnival/procession with cars, mums, dads and children dressed in fancy dress or costumes. At the same time villagers and their families from Finchdean were invited to walk to Rowlands Castle via Whitehill, footpath 13 to Wellsworth Lane, then down Bowes Hill to The Green.

More than twenty village organisations joined the procession that walked from Saint John’s Church, down Redhill Road, up Links Lane, down Bowes Hill and ended on the Green, where the WI provided a sumptuous tea and youngsters were presented with commemorative medals. The images provide just a flavour of the village’s big day that was celebrated by young and old alike. It’s estimated that more than a thousand people took part.

The Celebrations editorial is courtesy of Richard Milton, editor of the RCA magazine in 2012. 

Click to scroll through all the images and enlarge them.

On Sunday 3rd June at 11am there was a Thanksgiving Service for all church denominations on The Green followed at 12noon by a Diamond Jubilee Lunch Party on the Recreation Ground with gazebos and BBQs. At 10pm there was a fireworks display by Selstar Fireworks Ltd from within Deerleap Gardens.

The celebrations were sponsored by local businesses and organisations

The Photo Book

Editorial, the following paragraphs were written by the RCDJCG to promote the sales of the photo book

Following the very successful celebrations of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in the village, the RCDJCG joined forces with the Photographic Club to create a photo book to remember the event. The book went on sale in the autumn of 2012 at the village stores with a guide price of £6. All profits went towards a permanent commemoration of the day in the village.

So, as the nights draw in and temperatures drop, what better way to remember the parish’s Jubilee Extravaganza than by purchasing copies of the Diamond Jubilee Commemorative Photobook. The Photobook is packed with 80 pages of pictures, and we’ve included as many of you as possible. There are photos from all the Parish events; the school’s celebrations; Montessori Fair and children’s tea party; Children’s Bake off; walking procession and Grand Tea Party on the Green; Recreation Ground Tennis Tournament, Hog Roast and Games; the many street parties; and of course those fabulously patriotic Fireworks.

It even has a message from HM The Queen herself inside, with accompanying photographs!

As well as a wonderful reminder of the Jubilee celebrations, the Photobook is an ideal Christmas present, stocking filler, and/or could go into children’s memory boxes. The photo books are £6 each, and if you bought two or more they are at the bargain price of £5 each. They are available from Londis and Home Hardware, and from all the RCDJCG members.

A Permanent Memorial

The RCDJCG built upon the funds leftover from all the donations made before and during the Jubilee Weekend to raise as much money as possible for a long-lasting commemoration of the Diamond Jubilee in the village.

After some discussion, members agreed this installation should take the form of a mosaic. The RCDJCG sought approval from the Parish Council for the mosaic to be situated on the grass verge adjacent to the WI garden, and prepared a brief against which artists could submit their design ideas.

The mosaic, complete with an inscription dedicated to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, was unveiled in September 2014. The artist Elizabeth de Ath was present at the ceremony together with John Featherstone who built the brick plinth. Elizabeth told the gathering that it had taken her six hours a day for six weeks to create the mosaic with hundreds of tiles made from glass or ceramic.

The mosaic shows a Union Flag, fireworks, villagers dancing and the central image is a teapot pouring diamonds topped with the royal crown which shimmers at night with the Venetian gold trimming. The chairman of the RCDJCG is quoted as saying that “It proves when a few good people get together, we can do some fantastic things”

The story behind the Mosaic


With the remaining funds left over from the 2012 Jubilee celebrations, together with the proceeds from the sale of the subsequent photo book, the RCDJCG commissioned a permanent installation in the village to commemorate HM The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. After some discussion, members agreed this installation should take the form of a mosaic. The RCDJCG sought approval from the Parish Council for the mosaic to be situated on the grass verge adjacent to the WI garden and prepared the following brief against which artists could submit their design ideas.

Proposed Site

Rowlands Castle is purported to have the largest green in Hampshire. The proposed site is on a north-facing, wide grass verge adjacent to the village’s green. The verge has a busy footway running past.

Base Details

The RCDJCG envisages a base structure of concrete and brick (possibly with flint-wall details on the side), rectangular in shape with viewing predominantly from the long edge, and angled to provide maximum visibility for all, including small children, wheelchair users etc. The RCDJCG would welcome the artist’s advice on this matter. The base dimensions will be large enough to accommodate the mosaic with a securing border. It is important the installation is low maintenance, robust and as vandal-proof as possible.

Mosaic Details

Size: The RCDJCG is working on the basis of around 4 square metres of mosaic, though a degree of flexibility with regard to dimensions is feasible because it is important any design suits the proposed site.

Design Ideas: The RCDJCG is seeking a figurative design on 2 visual levels which will be colourful, though not specifically red, white and blue, whilst harmonising with the surrounding environment of the large village green. The proposed site tends to be quite shaded, and any design will need to bear this in mind. It should appeal to all ages, and both residents and visitors alike. Ideally, it would include different kinds and sizes of mosaic tile, including some which would make the mosaic appealing to visually-impaired people. The design might show a larger image when viewed from a distance, eg a crown, diamond. Then, as the viewer gets closer, the RCDJCG is especially keen that smaller, ‘hidden’ items are revealed as part of the design, to maintain interest and give observers something to look for. These would include depictions related to the Queen and/or the village’s Jubilee celebrations. The following is a list of ideas to date, though any design need not include all of them: a crown, the Union flag, a cupcake, on cake stand, teapot, tea cup and saucer, slice of cake on plate, vintage car (Reilly) and/or tractor (Massey Ferguson), a diamond, fireworks, bunting, a corgi/bulldog, girls/boys in 50s fashion, a picnic blanket set with food, the EIIR logo, the national Diamond Jubilee logo, the Queen’s head, the dates 1952 to 2012,the sceptre, a throne, a pig, a tug o’war, an example of the DJ Medal and/or badge the RCDJCG produced for the celebrations.

Elizabeth de Ath

The RCDJCG approached a range of mosaic artists and sought their design ideas. Elizabeth de Ath, who lives and works in Hove, was appointed by the RCDJCG to design and construct the mosaic.

One of Elizabeth’s design ideas submitted to RCDJCG

An outline of the base for the mosaic

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