Sunderland announces military tattoo for Diamond Jubilee

Queen Elizabeth II
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HUNDREDS of performers will take part in Sunderland’s first Tattoo, a spectacular celebration to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

From marching bands and music, to choirs and dancers, the event will mark the six decades of Her Majesty’s reign.

The narrator will be Alasdair Hutton, who for the last 20 years has been responsible for writing and narrating the world-famous Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

Wearside’s Tattoo will be held on June 30 and will include a pageant charting the historic events of the last 60 years, followed by a rousing flag-waving finale, featuring musical favourites from Last Night of the Proms.

More than 300 performers are expected to take part.

There will be two performances in St Peter’s Square at the Sir Tom Cowie Campus of the University of Sunderland, which will be a matinee dress rehearsal performance at 2.30pm and a main performance at 7.30pm.

The line up already includes Durham Army Cadet Band, 102 Battalion REME Pipe Band, Standard Bearers from the Royal British Legion, Highland Dancers, University of Sunderland Choir, tenor John Rowland, soprano Julie Pendleton and pupils from Southmoor School, with more performers to be announced over the coming weeks.

The event has been organised as part of the Tyne and Wear Lieutenancy’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

Lord Lieutenant Nigel Sherlock said: “Red, white and blue will be the order of the day and I think it’s going to a be a fabulous event.

“We’re going to be reliving the six decades of Her Majesty’s reign, from the 1950s to the present day, with a fantastic programme of music, song and dance.

“We’ll also be charting some of the many historic events of the last 60 years, from the space age to the 2012 Olympics so we’ve certainly got quite a bit to fit in. I think the show is going to be a really entertaining and memorable occasion and we’re hoping lots of people are going to come along and have a wonderful time.”

Tattoo Director, Major Eric Ingram, who is also a Deputy Lieutenant, has previously organised tattoos in Newcastle and Durham.

Tickets for the event are on sale from today, priced at £10 for adults and £5 for under 14s for the 7.30pm evening performance and £5 for adults and free for under 14s for the 2.30pm dress rehearsal performance.

They are available from www.ticketsource.co.uk/artscentrewashington, the Tourist Information Centre at City Library and Arts Centre, Fawcett Street and the Arts Centre, Washington.

Any surplus money from the event will be donated to one of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee charities.