Helpful tips on how to host your own Street Party for the King’s Coronation
So you want to host a street party to celebrate King Charles III’s coronation? Our comprehensive guide covers everything you need to know about planning your street party, including the hosting rules that may surprise you!
Street parties are a great British tradition and promote togetherness and community! The date of the King’s coronation is May 6th 2023, though many will be hosting their street parties on Sunday 7th May. The deadline for applying for permission for a street party is Friday 31st March in many places, though some councils are extending the deadline.
The Big Lunch project offers a Coronation pack and advice for joining in during the Month of Community. You can even have your street party featured on their Big Lunch map.
Phase one: 6-8 weeks before the event
- The first thing to do is get in touch with your neighbours and decide if a group of you are willing to work together to host a street party! You’ll need a team, as planning and executing a community event like this takes a lot of work and requires cooperation from everyone.
- The next major thing to be aware of is the admin involved in hosting a street party. You will need to:
– Pick the date you’d like to host your street party. It’s a good idea to consult your attendees and make a decision together, but it is likely that the Sunday after the coronation (May 7th) will work best, as fewer people work on Sundays. This will also align with the Big Lunch initiative, which is helping people organise street parties on that date throughout the UK.
– You will need to apply to your local council for permission to host a street party by 30th March. You can find your local council by entering your postcode and apply here on the government’s website.
– You may also need to apply for street party insurance – some councils in the UK require this as a condition of hosting a party. Your council should make it clear when they reply to your application whether or not this is a requirement where you live.
– Your council should tell you if your street party will require a road closure.
– The government’s website offers a detailed breakdown of common myths around hosting a street party and may help alleviate your worries!
What if we’ve missed the deadline?
Don’t panic: if you miss the deadline for applying for permission, you can still find ways to celebrate the coronation.
- A picnic in the park is a lovely alternative to a street party: you can gather up to about 30 neighbours in a public green space without needing express permission, as long as you do not bring a barbecue and do not disturb other park users.
- Alternatively, you could host a smaller get-together in your own home or garden. You can host what’s known as a ‘Street Meet’ on private land, such as a driveway or front garden, without the need for council approval.
Phase two: 3-5 weeks before the event
- Agree within your group who is going to be responsible for what. You may like to arrange yourselves into smaller groups where each individual has a specific role to play. Areas you might delegate to different groups include:
– Games and prizes
– Invitations and publicity
2. Consider ways to encourage people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds to join in.
- Collect photographs of the street and immediate surroundings throughout the years: you could put up a display of these photographs, showing the history of your local area. This may especially engage older neighbours, who may have been around a long time, as they can offer their direct experience of how the street has changed over time.
- Hosting games and quizzes is a great way to bring different generations together.
- You might like to host some competitions to give people a project to work on leading up to the event. Some ideas include:
– Art competition for children under 12
– Dance competition for children/young adults
– Baking competition for all ages
– Outfit competition for all ages
- Think about how you’re going to approach your neighbours and ask them to attend the party. You can certainly send paper invitations or leaflets, but you may also like to create a Facebook group for the party where everyone can contribute ideas and thoughts and offer help. Be mindful, though, that some people do not use social media: if you can spare the time, there is simply no substitute for knocking on doors and having a face-to-face conversation with your neighbours about the party!
- The Street Party site has an excellent toolkit for age-friendly streets that you might like to use to help you ensure everyone feels included.
Phase three: 1-2 weeks before the event
- You might like to start buying or making your King’s coronation party decorations at this stage of the proceedings.
Union Jacks are a very popular decorative staple of any street party! You can purchase Union Jack print paper plates, bunting and tinsel.
You can also purchase decorations which are unique to this specific event, such as King Charles III’s coronation bunting and balloons.
If you wanted, you could make your own decorations! Several companies have released both child-friendly craft sets and more complex adult projects in honour of the coronation. For example, you can download and print a template and colour it in yourself to make your very own Union Jack bunting if you wish. This would be a lovely activity for the street’s younger children in the run-up to the big day!
2. You may also like to begin planning the games and activities you will make available to your party guests. We recommend:
This is designed for you to play in groups while you’re watching the coronation on TV. You can distribute this among the attendees before the coronation itself begins, and they play along and tick off events as they happen to make the experience more interactive.
Hosting a quiz is a fun way of teaming up neighbours who may not talk much, pooling their knowledge to try and win together! You can write your own questions or find some online.
Download our printable quiz in pdf format here.
We’ll be adding more downloadable games ideas later on, so watch this space!
3. You will need to source tables, chairs and anything else (such as gazebos) you will need for the day of the party.
- Ask all your neighbours if they are able to help with this (many people have patio furniture which isn’t too heavy to move and is designed for the outdoors, which makes it ideal for this sort of event).
- If you can’t gather together enough tables and chairs from your neighbours, you will need to start looking elsewhere. Gumtree and Freecycle often have furniture listed for free or for very low prices, so these may be a good place to start!
- Alternatively, if your party is going to be larger than life, you can hire furniture (or even a marquee) from companies that cater for bigger events.
Phase four: the week leading up to the event
- Now is the time to start preparing the food for the event!
We’ve collected a few favourite Coronation recipes:
To honour Queen Elizabeth II:
Here are a handful of recipes designed in honour of the Queen, who passed away in 2022 after a lifetime of service to the nation:
Created in honour of Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation in 1952, Coronation Chicken has been a British sandwich staple for many years!
Platinum jubilee chicken
This is a more recent recipe, designed in honour of Queen Elizabeth II’s platinum jubilee.
A competition was held to find the official puddings of the Queen’s platinum jubilee: the winner was a Lemon Swiss Roll and Amaretti trifle.
To honour the new King:
There are three official recipes which famous chefs have devised in honour of King Charles III’s coronation. You may like to cook these for your party.
Ken Hom’s Coronation Roast Rack of Lamb with Asian-style marinade
Nadiya Hussain’s Coronation Aubergine
Adam Handling’s Strawberry and Ginger trifle
Popular party food staples:
Adorable, on-theme and loved by everyone, you can’t go wrong with these lovely iced biscuits.
Another British party and picnic staple, these pork pies will please young and old alike.
Can you host an event celebrating Britishness without scones? The argument about how it’s pronounced is part and parcel of the day.
If you fancy making something a bit different to drink, this will hit the spot very nicely.
2. It’s a great time to make up a playlist for background music! We recommend:
- Selecting family-friendly hits (avoid songs with swearing or explicit themes).
- Picking a range of songs from across the decades to appeal to all ages
- Adding songs that have a popular dance attached to them (Macarena, Saturday Night, Oops Upside Your Head, Cha Cha Slide) to encourage dancing and participation.
- You might like to heavily feature British artists to tie into the theme of the coronation. The Department of Culture, Media and Sport have made an official Coronation Playlist on Spotify using British artists if you’d like to use theirs!
Phase five: the day of the event
- It’s time for your helpers to get to work on setting up the party.
- Get some volunteers to help you lay out tables, chairs and any structures you are planning to put up, such as gazebos.
- Other members of your group can take on lighter duties, such as putting up decorations and putting food and drink out onto the tables you’ve arranged.
Finally, enjoy yourself! You’ve worked hard to plan and execute this event, so it’s essential that you now take the time to soak up the fruits of that labour. Chat with as many neighbours as you can, especially those who you may not have had much contact with before. Here’s hoping this can be the start of an even better community than you had before!
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