This year marks the occasion of Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee and we can all look forward to celebrating with an extra long bank holiday to enjoy between 2nd-5th June. Whether you’re hoping to attend a street party, or just want some family-friendly activities to keep your little ones occupied in the city this summer, we’ve put together this guide featuring some of the best ways to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee in Leeds.
Indulge in a Bottomless Afternoon Tea at the Royal Armouries
Friday 3rd June, 11:30am-3:30pm
Head to Leeds’ Royal Armouries on the 3rd June for four hours of flowing bubbles along with the chance to indulge in a famous afternoon tea from Le Chalet. You’ll be able to enjoy dainty sandwiches, along with canapes, cakes, desserts and a scone with jam and clotted cream. There’ll be live jazz music to listen to while you dine and you might even want to take a twirl on the dancefloor afterwards. As there are limited places, it’s advisable to book early to avoid disappointment.
Tickets from £59.88–£65
Enjoy a drink or two in one of Leeds’ buzzing beer gardens
Even if you’re not feeling particularly patriotic, there may be no better way to spend the long bank holiday weekend than soaking up the sun in a beer garden while catching up with friends. Leeds has many brilliant pubs with beer gardens to discover – some of our favourites include the Lamb and Flag, The Midnight Bell, Duck & Drake, Whitelock’s Ale House and the Turk’s Head, The Cross Keys and the North Brewing Co. Tap Room.
Learn how to paddleboard with the Canal & River Trust
Friday 3rd June, 10am-3:30pm
To celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, the Canal & River Trust are offering free family-friendly canoeing sessions. Come along to Skinner’s Yard in Armley to learn how to paddleboard with a team of friendly and fully-qualified instructors. The ‘Let’s Paddle’ sessions last an hour and are suitable for adults and children aged seven and upwards who’d like to try out a new hobby. Visit the Canal & River Trust website to find out more and book your place.
Have a Jubilee Picnic at Temple Newsam
Thursday 2nd June, 11am-3pm
Temple Newsam’s Jubilee Picnic will provide a fun-filled day out for all of the family in celebration of the Platinum Jubilee. Bring your own picnic along and enjoy activities, games and musical entertainment on the historic house’s West Lawn. There will also be plenty of things to do around the house itself and on the farm. Pre-book tickets on the Temple Newsam website or pay on the day.
Splash out with cocktails at PASTEL
Located on Kirkgate, just a short walk from Leeds’ market and busy shopping streets, PASTEL is a modern cocktail bar with a colourful interior that’s reminiscent of a Wes Anderson film set. Here, you can enjoy signature cocktails, including ‘Wray of Sunshine’ made with El Jimador tequila, Wray & Nephew, Sunshine Syrup, lime, basil, pineapple juice and skittles, or the ‘PASTEL Fizz’ with Bacardi Raspberry, raspberry liqueur, fresh lime juice, cream, egg white, soda and PASTEL dust – a great way to celebrate Her Majesty’s Jubilee in style.
Cocktails from £8
Share a delicious platter at Friends of Ham
Known for their incredible cheese and charcuterie grazing platters, a trip to Friends of Ham is a great way to feed a small crowd while sampling cured meats from around the world. You can opt for a premade platter or make your own, choosing from mouth-watering meats and delicious cheeses such as Hafod clothbound cheddar, Sparkenhoe – a ‘biscuity, fudgy blue’ – or Langres with its Champagne brandy-wash rind. Charcuterie might be what FRAM does best but there’s also plenty for vegetarians to enjoy here, including the vegan board featuring Padron peppers, tomato, caper and shallot bruschetta, potato salad, olive tapenade and sourdough.
Platters from £16-£21.50
Light up the night at Woodhall Beacon
On Thursday 2nd June, a trail of fire will illuminate the night sky as thousands of beacons are lit across the country to mark the occasion of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Beacons in and around Leeds will be lit, including the one in the city centre and those in Horsforth, Bramham, Armley, Clifford, Sherburn-in-Elmet, Monk Fryston, Grange Moor, Thorner, Ledsham, Otley Chevin, Barwick in Elmet, Shadwell, Wetherby and Calverley. The beacon on Woodhall will be set alight as part of the national event and this will be followed by a firework display on the 4th June at the Farsley Festival – a family-focused Jubilee celebration with free activities, food, music, inflatable play, a silent disco and more.
Go bug hunting at the Hollybush Conservation Centre
Sunday 5th June
The volunteers at the Hollybush Conservation Centre in Kirkstall have been helping to take care of green spaces across the city for the last 40 years. To mark the occasion of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee they will be holding their first annual survey of nature in the Hollybush garden. Come along to help out with pond dipping, bug hunting and more to create a record of Leeds wildlife in 2022. Search for TVC Hollybush on Facebook to get involved.
Plant a tree for the Jubilee with the Queen’s Green Canopy
Launched to celebrate her Platinum Jubilee, the Queen’s Green Canopy is a tree planting initiative that will support British nature and wildlife by inviting everyone in the UK to plant a tree. Anyone can join in and free trees will be given to schools and community groups. Once you’ve planted your tree, you’ll be able to buy a commemorative plaque for it and add it to the QGC’s official map. Visit the Queen’s Green Canopy website to learn more.