May 22 2013 Latest news:
By SOPHIE WYLLIE
Sunday, June 3, 2012
An impressive flotilla entertained hordes of people at Wells who flocked to the seaside town yesterday to celebrate the Queen’s diamond jubilee.
The main attraction, which took place at the quay, included about 70 lifeboats, kayaks, old wooden sailing boats which were used in the Dunkirk evacuation during the second world war, and traditional crabbing boats.
This was the largest flotilla ever to take place in Wells and every single boat was bedecked in Union Jack bunting and flags.
People on the boats ranged from just 15 weeks old to an 86-year-old man, who used to be a coxswain in Wells Lifeboat.
Revellers also wore masks of the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and a variety of patriotic headgear.
Joe Ellison, Wells town councillor and one of the organisers, said: “This is what makes me feel so proud of Wells. When the Wells people get together it is wonderful.”
Other attractions on the day included stilt walkers and a juggler, as well as entertainment from the an opera singer, a guitarist and the drum group Trix ‘n’ Stix.
People also enjoyed lots of food at a street party on the quay in the afternoon.
Phyllis Bowers, 85, from East Barsham, was one of the many spectators on the day, which was extra special because her late brother-in-law, Ernie Atherton, was in the Army’s Horse Guards Regiment and rode behind the Queen’s carriage in the 1953 coronation.
She said: “The atmosphere is lovely. It is absolutely wonderful.”
Joan Howling, 82, from Tattersett, said: “It has been brilliant. They have really gone to town here.”
But it was not just people from Norfolk towns and villages who enjoyed the coastal spectacle.
Holidaymakers Peter and Julie Gamble, 65 and 56 respectively, from Leicester, said: “For a small town they do a lot. They put in a lot of hard work.”
Other jubilee events in Wells included music at The Buttlands and fireworks last night, a Churches Together service in St Nicholas Church at 6.30pm tonight and the lighting of the jubilee beacon near the quay tomorrow night.