2022 heralds the Platinum Jubilee year for Her Majesty The Queen, marking 70 years of service to the people of the United Kingdom, the Realms and the Commonwealth.
St Paul’s will hold a historic Service of Thanksgiving for The Queen’s reign on Friday 3rd June, part of a four day UK bank holiday weekend from Thursday 2nd to Sunday 5th June.
To mark this extraordinary and exciting occasion, St Paul’s announces a brand new exhibition. Jubilee: St Paul’s, the Monarch and the Changing World explores the history of Jubilee celebrations at St Paul’s Cathedral across three centuries.
Opening on Wednesday 25th May 2022, the special exhibition at St Paul’s Cathedral examines the Jubilee celebrations for King George III, King George V, Queen Victoria and the Silver, Golden and Diamond Jubilees of HM Queen Elizabeth II.
Using objects from St Paul’s extensive Archive and Collections, the exhibition tells the stories of Jubilee celebrations for each monarch, from the Golden Jubilee celebrations of George III in 1809, to the most recent Jubilees for HM Queen Elizabeth II. Visitors can see beautifully embroidered and ornate copes (or ceremonial cloaks) worn by clergy during special services; scrap books collected by staff and volunteers through the years, pictures and paintings from each memorable day and much more.
One distinctive object on display is the Jubilee Cope. Designed by Beryl Dean, the delicately embroidered cloak depicts the spires of 73 churches in the Diocese of London, three Royal Peculiars and St Paul’s Cathedral, realised in cream and pastel silks and golden threads. Taking thousands of hours for skilled needle workers to produce, the Jubilee Cope was presented to the Diocese of London to commemorate the Silver Jubilee in 1977 and first worn at the Service of Thanksgiving on 7 June 1977.
Exploring the theme of souvenirs, the exhibition also includes designs for commemorative tea towels, designed by local school students in collaboration with the St Paul’s Schools and Family Learning team. Over 90 Art and Design students from schools in London borough Tower Hamlets have designed tea towels, exploring their family stories over the past 70 years, with a selection on display as part of the exhibition.
Alongside the exhibition there will be a special programme of events this year including late night openings in July and August. 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 Her Majesty.
The Dean of St Paul’s, the Very Reverend Dr David Ison says “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. Along with our community outreach programmes and late opening events, our Jubilee exhibition is a fitting way to mark this special occasion.”
Jubilee: St Paul’s, the Monarch and the Changing World
Opening from 25th March 2022
Monday to Saturday, 08.30-16.30
(10.30-16.30 on Wednesdays)
Entry to exhibition included in sightseeing admission.