Thousands flock to watch Diamond Jubilee River Pageant pass through Wandsworth
Thousands of people in the borough flocked to the Thames to watch the Queen pass by as part of the Diamond Jubilee River Pageant, despite the miserable weather.
The floatilla was kick-started in Wandsworth with the Queen boarding the Spirit of Chatwell in Battersea Bridge, before continuing down the Thames until Tower Bridge.
She was joined by her family, including the Duke of Edinburgh, the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, waving to crowds in a white and silver outfit designed by Angela Kelly.
The belfry carrying The Royal Jubilee Bells was the first vessel to pass through Wandsworth, followed by a spectacular million-pound row barge Gloriana led by Sir Matthew Pinsent and Sir Steve Redgrave.
Hordes of people queued up for hours outside Battersea Park for the Diamond Jubilee festival dressed in waterproofs for an excellent view of the river procession.
Onlookers sang God Save the Queen from Berkeley Flats, in Queenstown Road, Battersea, while visitors camped outside Chelsea Bridge Wharf since early morning.
Councillors, volunteers and other special guests in Wandsworth were invited to watch from Chelsea Bridge.
Mayor of Wandsworth, Councillor Adrian Knowles spoke of the mounting excitement before the flotilla on the bridge.
He said: “People are excited, everyone is looking forward to it. I was born after the Queen ascended the throne and was told the day after was even colder than today.”
Helen Boyle, 37, of Battersea and Rowan Boyle, 77, of Battersea said: “The rain isn't dampening our spirits, we've been looking forward to it.”
Nicola Lipton, 39, shop proprietor, of Hampshire, said: “I think it's a chance to celebrate. I don't know if it's patriotic, but it's contagious.
“I'm proud to be British, tomorrow I will be going to a street party in Enfield.”
Gareth Jones and Joanna Jones, of Claygate, Surrey, said: “We have been looking forward to being part of a historic pageant and celebrating 60 years of the Queen.”
About one million people watched the record breaking Diamond Jubilee pageant, with tugs, steamers, pleasure cruisers and kayaks travelling down the River Thames.
The event marks the biggest river celebration in 350 years, with 1,000 boats taking part.