By Robert Guthrie
DUMFRIES, Scotland – With four days packed with fantastic Diamond Jubilee celebrations – including a massive pageant of ships on the River Thames, a star-studded concert at Buckingham Palace and much more – the United Kingdom marked the 60-year reign of Queen Elizabeth II.
As the celebrations wound down, young people weighed in on the festivities.
“It was spectacular, actually mind-blowing,” said Euan McIntosh, 16, of Moniaive, Scotland. “I watched the concert merely because Paul McCartney and Elton John were playing. I briefly saw the boat race but had other duties to attend to.”
Fleur Robinson of Carrutherstown in Dumfries, Scotland, thoroughly enjoyed the jubilee and gave credit to Queen Elizabeth II.
“I think it’s all been good because the queen does a lot for not just our country but also for the commonwealth,” Robinson said. “She is a hard working lady.”
Although she didn’t attend any local celebrations, Robinson said, “My family had a celebratory roast dinner and watched the jubilee show on TV.”
“It was quite spectacular!” said 14-year-old Alistair Muir, from Closeburn in Scotland.
Though Muir said he watched the flotilla on the River Thames and the concert in front of Buckingham Palace, he wasn’t able to participate in anything in person.
“I won’t take part in any street parties because the place I live in has just a few houses,” Muir said.
McIntosh also said he didn’t take part in any celebrations having to do with the jubilee.
“None whatsoever, as I live in a region of Scotland where the royals are generally resented,” McIntosh said. “I think the celebration was grand, yet I still have mixed opinions about the monarchy.”
There are positives about the royals, McIntosh said, such as tourism and diplomacy, but drawbacks are feudalism and the class system.
Kelly Alexander, 14, from Wiltshire, offered an English perspective. Though she said the whole thing could be seen as “sentimental,” overall she found it dull.
It “just bores me – it’s too hyped up in my opinion,” Alexander said.
“I watched a bit of the concert,” she said, but said that overall, “I don’t think it’s worth the fuss.”
But crowds lining the streets of London during the Jubilee sang, “Long live our gracious Queen.”
If the Queen is still in place a decade from now – and only time will tell – Robinson will surely take part in the festivities.
“It’s good to have an event like this every decade to celebrate the work the Queen puts into the country,” she said.