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Felixstowe celebration fit for a Queen

PUBLISHED: 19:00 04 June 2002 | UPDATED: 15:27 03 March 2010

REVELLERS flocked to the seaside for a golden jubilee celebration fit for a Queen - and were blessed with a day to remember for all their lives.

More than 35,000 packed on to Felixstowe seafront for a day of song and dance as the resort staged the biggest event in the region.

REVELLERS flocked to the seaside for a golden jubilee celebration fit for a Queen – and were blessed with a day to remember for all their lives.

More than 35,000 packed on to Felixstowe seafront for a day of song and dance as the resort staged the biggest event in the region.

The seafront was transformed into a "musical mile" with dozens of bands playing on a series of covered stages as jubilee fever swept the town.

Dancers strutted their stuff, street entertainers brought fun and laughter, and an It's a Knock-out competition added a colourful spectacle with so much for people to see and do.

The promenade was solid with visitors enjoying the sights and sounds of the BBC Music Live festival, and the beach was a mass of people relaxing, eating picnics and soaking up the atmosphere.

Not for more than a decade had the beaches been so packed and one resident said it took him back to the 1950s when town had an influx of holidaymakers.

The rain held off, except for a few spots at tea-time, though the day was mainly overcast with few breaks in the cloud cover.

It all began at 1pm when the town joined with the rest of the nation to sing the Beatles' anthem All You Need is Love – with thousands gathering on the seafront in a colourful cavalcade to sing.

Then the £24,000 11-hour event really took off as more than 50 bands began playing on the stages and the crowds began to let their hair down.

There was a wide variety of music to hear – from rock to jazz, ethnic to brass, folk to pop, and dance to easy listening, techno to soul, and country to rap.

Among the special events was a dance performance called The Music Man outside the Spa Pavilion when young dancers joined with a dancing skeleton, a clown and a supporting cast to dance to the song.

Ten children from the town's junior schools took centre stage in the energetic display, choreographed by dancer teacher Sheryl Southernwood.

Another special event was an air display over the sea with a single-seater Yak plane thrilling the crowds with its twists and turns, loops and dives, and a series of low flypasts.

All along the seafront there were street entertainers including jugglers and buskers demonstrating their skills, and other attractions included a travelling funfair, firework display, and a non-stop 50-plus hour sponsored DJ marathon.

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