Thursday, March 15, 2012 - 11:00

The Duchess of Cornwall has agreed to become Patron of The Big Jubilee Lunch (BJL). Today a group of six young BJL organisers from a local school met Her Royal Highness to discuss their plans with her.

The children, from St Peter’s Eaton Square primary school, with their faces painted in Union Jack colours, knocked on the door of Clarence House, which was opened by The Duchess of Cornwall. She invited the children inside, entertained them in the Garden Room, chatted about their Diamond Jubilee celebration plans, and enjoyed the cupcakes they had made as a gift for their hostess.

At the end of the visit, the children asked The Duchess of Cornwall to become Patron of The Big Jubilee Lunch, which she gladly agreed to do.

Communities across the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth are being encouraged to hold lunches on Sunday, June 3rd as part of the main programme for The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Celebrations. Street parties, garden gatherings and picnics will unite the nation as neighbours, friends and family gather to celebrate over the Bank holiday week end.

The Big Jubilee Lunch has evolved from The Big Lunch which is run by the Eden Project as a simple idea to encourage people to sit down with their neighbours on one day. Since 2009, thousands of Big Lunches have taken place across the United Kingdom and in 2011 the number of participants doubled to the best part of two million. This year, a record number of people are expected to take part.

Organisers of The Big Jubilee Lunch are delighted. Peter Stewart, Campaigns Director, says: “We are thrilled and proud that The Duchess of Cornwall is to be the Patron of The Big Jubilee Lunch. And it was thrilling for the children who visited her to be treated so warmly by Her Royal Highness in her home. It is a huge boost to our ambition to get as many people in the UK and throughout the Commonwealth to sit with their neighbours and have lunch as part of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations. The original idea for The Big Lunch came from Cornwall so it feels particularly apt that our patron is in fact The Duchess of Cornwall."