Are we party poopers in Sheffield?

Queen Elizabeth II holds flowers during a walkabout in the centre of Windsor, after departing from Windsor Castle with the Duke of Edinburgh. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Monday April 30, 2012. See PA story ROYAL Queen. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire
Queen Elizabeth II holds flowers during a walkabout in the centre of Windsor, after departing from Windsor Castle with the Duke of Edinburgh. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Monday April 30, 2012. See PA story ROYAL Queen. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire
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NOT a single official civic event has been planned in Sheffield to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Sheffield Council has organised nothing official to mark Her Majesty’s 60 years on the throne.

Civic celebrations are being staged elsewhere around the country - including a town centre extravaganza in Rotherham, the opening of a new public square in Doncaster, and a reception for diamond anniversary couples in Chesterfield.

Sheffield Council said it is leaving it to communities to organise their own events for the Diamond Jubilee.

But the decision not to hold an official city celebration has been criticised by community groups, Armed forces representatives and businesses - who today called for a change of heart.

Vince McDonagh, secretary of Sheffield Joint Council of Ex Service Associations, said: “It surprises me the council is doing nothing at all - I would have thought there would have been some sort of civic commemoration.

“Because the Queen is head of all the military, there is an affection for her within Sheffield’s service community. I think our members will be disappointed there will be no event.”

Joan Ashton, aged 73, of Newgate Close, High Green, who is organising a party on her street where three couples are marking their 60th wedding anniversaries, said: “We’re England’s fourth biggest city - there should be some acknowledgement.”

Carol Kent, of Patmore Road, Firth Park, where residents are organising a street party for June 5, said: “There is a need for a civic event for the whole city. I’m sure some money could be found.”

And Gill Blanshard, who is organising a programme of jubilee events at The Nichols Building vintage, art and crafts centre in Shalesmoor, said: “I think it’s appalling the council is doing nothing.”

Sheffield Council says 27 street parties, and dozens of community events, are planned - and six beacons will be lit at the same time as hundreds more across the country on June 4.

Paul Billington, the council’s director of culture and environment, said: “Our past experience has shown most people enjoy celebrating these occasions within their local communities, as was the case with last year’s Royal Wedding. We have been actively working with local community groups to help people celebrate the Diamond Jubilee with their friends and family.”

He said more details will be issued soon about six beacon celebrations - in Chapeltown Park, the Mayfield Valley, Bradway Recreation Ground, Manor Fields, Fox Lane Playing Fields and the Bolehills in Crookes - planned for June 4 to coincide with a national series of beacon lightings.

And he added: “We have also received 27 enquiries so far from community groups across the city who are planning street parties.

“I am confident the people of Sheffield will take this opportunity to celebrate the Jubilee and make it a special day to be remembered by everyone.”