Gráinne McCloskey, NI Manager for the Big Jubilee Lunch, which is run by Eden Communities and funded by the National Lottery, was speaking in the wake of some 3000 people across NI registering to run official Platinum Jubilee events in their own communities on Sunday.
She noted that the Duchess of Cornwall has been the patron of the annual Big Lunch since her Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
“But this year feels like the biggest ever,” she added. “We have had over 100,000 people across the UK register as organisers for Big Lunches in their own communities.
“And almost 3000 downloaded organiser packs in Northern Ireland to run their own Platinum Jubilee Big Jubilee lunch events in their own communities. It is anticipated that over 14m people have taken part this weekend alone.
“Some are private street events and some are public events for the Jubilee Lunch with the majority running their events on Sunday.
Grainne was in Templepatrick for a a Big Jubilee Lunch as a community fun day, in Wallace Park organised by Templepatrick Community Association and supported by the local council over the weekend
Well over 2000 people attended from 12 to 5pm.
“To be quite honest it is humbling to be involved with the positivity that exists across communities in Northern Ireland. We are often known for the negative side of things but are probably amongst the friendliest people in the UK.
“And it is days like this that lets you see the amount of community spirit. People were only too happy to get back together after Covid. and it was lovely to see people recognising their key workers as well in the same event.”