Swan Lodge Platinum Jubilee celebrations go off with a bang
published on 10 Jun 2022
The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations went off with a bang across Sunderland with the lighting of the jubilee beacon by The Salvation Army.
To mark the 70th anniversary of the Queen’s reign, Swan Lodge Lifehouse led the celebrations at Seaburn Park Lighthouse lighting one of the thousands of beacons across the UK and the Commonwealth for the Jubilee Weekend.
The lighthouse was also lit up in red, white and blue. Music was provided by Salvation Army bands from the Sunderland Citadel, Monkwearmouth, and Millfield Corps (churches). Sunderland Voices, a choir made up of Swan Lodge staff and residents and Salvation Army songsters, also performed as well as the Houghton-le-Spring Pipe Band.
Food was provided by The Salvation Army van and staffed by Swan Lodge residents, who also acted as stewards ensuring the event went smoothly.
Christine Ritchie, Swan Lodge Manager who organised the event, said: “We had a fantastic evening, even the rain didn’t put us off!
“We were all aware that we were taking part in something historic and our lads and lasses rose to the challenge of putting on a good show for the community. They will be able to look back on it and feel proud at having been involved.
“To see The Salvation Army bands playing against the backdrop of the lighthouse which was lit up in different colours and then the lighting of the beacon itself – it was magical.”
It is the second time Swan Lodge has been asked to take in the celebrations having lit the beacon before to mark her majesty’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
The celebrations are not ending as Christine has also been selected to be a Batonbearer for the North East as part of the Birmingham 2022 Queen's Baton Relay in July.
Christine added: “I’m so honoured to have been nominated to do this and to have the opportunity to represent The Salvation Army as a Batonbearer.
“Our clients will be coming along to support me so it will be a great day of celebration.”
One of Swan Lodge’s residents David, a skilled woodworker, has also made two beautiful candleholders which have been sent to the Queen.
“David is incredibly talented and has had the opportunity to follow his passion at Swan Lodge. He’s created something beautiful as a way of saying thank you to our Queen for her leadership and guidance,” Christine added.
Swan Lodge offers supported accommodation for up to 65 adult men and women. Supported accommodation includes offering support with housing, addiction, mental health to help tackle the reasons people find themselves homeless in the first place.