Category: shoppingcity centre

Shop4Plymouth blogger Lucy Young shares her top tips for throwing the perfect Platinum Jubilee party…

It’s not long now until Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her Platinum Jubilee and an impressive 70 years on the throne, which means a four-day Bank Holiday weekend and the chance to plan a perfect party that’s fit for a queen. From Thursday 2 until Sunday 5 June more than 40 street parties have been planned across Plymouth alone, but fear not, if you didn’t apply for a road closure in time to host your own, you can still organise your own Jubilee Street Meet or Big Lunch for your neighbours, friends and relatives and the long weekend provides the perfect time for a BBQ, buffet or traditional afternoon tea.

So, the invites are out and you’ve prepped for the essentials…it’s time to organise the finishing touches, food and drink and what you’re going to wear! Unsurprisingly, classic High Street store Marks and Spencer has many jubilee-themed goodies in its Food Hall. From traditional butter shortbread in a commemorative tin to bottles of cork-popping platinum prosecco; they even have chocolate corgis, a special edition summer gin liqueur and plenty of red, white and blue tableware to complement the festivities.

How about serving a classic afternoon tea with Jubilee themed goodies from Marks & Spencer

How about serving a classic afternoon tea with Jubilee themed goodies from Marks & Spencer?

If you’re planning a traditional spread of dishes made famous by previous jubilees (think Coronation chicken, Victoria sponge cake or a classic cream tea) you could get all your guests to bring something so you’re not catering for the masses single-handedly. But whatever you do decide to rustle up, Plymouth Market in the city’s West End has some fantastic local produce to get you started. From daily fresh fish, meat and poultry to fabulous fruit and veg and those all-important summer strawberries. We’re so lucky in the Westcountry to have so much fabulous produce grown on our doorstep so there’s never been a better time to buy local.

But if you’d rather not spend your time off cooking and baking then you could order some cakes and bakes from local companies such as Just Like Mumma’s instead. Their award-winning Deluxe Victoria Sponge would make a great centre piece dessert or how about a Devon cream tea with scones, jam and lashings of clotted cream. Rise Bakeries in Frankfort Gate and Plymstock Broadway have sensational seasonal-flavoured and decorated cronuts and sweet treats, plus amazing focaccia and sourdough loaves that have just been awarded a Taste of the West Gold Award for 2022 – surely an accolade fit for Her Majesty’s party spread?

Make the most of marvellous local produce from Plymouth Market

Make the most of marvellous local produce from Plymouth Market

And don’t forget the drinks to raise that all-important toast – whilst a good old cup of tea might suffice for some partygoers, there’s nothing like a pitcher of Pimm’s for a summer celebration. But keeping it local, why not opt for Plymouth Gin Fruit Cup for an aromatic and fruity base for a garden party punch. Available alongside the city’s other celebrated namesake gins in the Black Friars Distillery on the Barbican’s Southside Street. Or if beer is more your bag, you can buy local brews from Peverell’s Roam brewery or the Royal William Yard’s Steel Brew Company, speciality lagers, ciders and IPAs from Vessel Beer Shop on Exeter Street or stock up on quirky cans from Bulletproof Brewing on Mutley Plain.

With your food and drink planned it’s time to turn your attention to some last-minute decorations and maybe some fancy-dress party accessories. Poundland on Royal Parade and Streamers on New George Street have loads of affordable party favours, honeycomb decorations and paper streamers in classic red, white and blue as well as sparkly tiaras and jazzy faux jewellery so you can sparkle like Queen Liz in all her finery.

And if you’re looking to dress the part to join in the Jubilee fun that’s sweeping the nation, you could plan a fancy-dress theme and ask your guests to come in 1950s fashion, to celebrate the decade when Her Majesty ascended the throne, pick a traditional British icon to come as or ask everyone to dress in red, white and blue or even to wear something platinum or silver. And the city’s charity shops are perfect to hunt for that perfect vintage outfit or add themed accessories without breaking the bank whilst contributing to a good cause at the same time. Local Plymouth charity Vintage Shekinah on Mutley Plain always has a fantastic selection of pre-loved vintage fashion and the many St Luke’s shops across the city have pulled out the stops with their Union Jack inspired window displays.

All you need now is music to get the party going in full swing. Why not ask your guests to send you their top tracks from the last seventy years or compile a playlist with number one hits from each decade from the 1950s to the present day. And surely it would only be fitting to buy a copy of punk band the Sex Pistols’ infamous 1977 Silver Jubilee year hit God Save the Queen, due for special edition reissue on 27 May. Check out indie record store Really Good Records on Exeter Street or HMV on Cornwall Street for more party music inspo.

Make a party play list or buy classic tracks from HMV or Really Good Records

Make a party play list or buy classic tracks from HMV or Really Good Records

Now, here’s hoping the weather is kind and we can all enjoy a happy and glorious long weekend celebrating our marvellous monarch. There’s certainly been no ‘reign’ to stop play so far… thank you for the extra Bank Holiday ma’am!

 For more Jubilee Party inspiration and Big Lunch ideas go to the official Jubilee website or check out Visit Plymouth’s Jubilee page for all the details of what’s going on in Britain’s Ocean City.

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