A HUGE jelly replica of Buckingham Palace – complete with jelly corgis – has been unveiled in the run-up to the street party marking the Queen’s official 90th birthday.
About 10,000 guests will gather on The Mall in central London on Sunday in celebration of the monarch’s milestone anniversary.
Pimm’s created the wobbly tribute – which took more than 200 man-hours to make – as the drinks brand prepares for its role as the official tipple of the ticketed celebration, The Patron’s Lunch.
The edible palace, which is a metre long, 15cm wide and 20cm high and weighs 35kg, was crafted using 35 litres of liquid – including Pimm’s No 1 Cup and champagne.
A team of three, led by sculptor Tim Simpson, spent more than 50 hours model-making and laser-cutting to create the royal mould, before concocting a jelly with the right rigidity and wobble.
Simpson said: “Buckingham Palace is one of the most recognisable buildings in the world, so there was considerable pressure to produce a replica that honoured it appropriately. We’re delighted with how it turned out.”
The artists also made several jelly corgis in honour of the Queen’s much-loved pets.
Pimm’s expects to serve around 30,000 glasses or 5,000 jugs of drinks at the celebration when revellers – most of whom are from the 600 charities of which the Queen is patron – will sit down to a hamper-style lunch on the famous thoroughfare.
Footmen wearing liveried red and gold jackets, Union flag waistcoats and black hats will be stationed on The Mall to serve the picnickers, who have paid £150 per head to attend. The footmen will also cycle around the site in St James’s Park and Green Park on “bar bike” trikes, delivering drinks.
Hundreds of cucumbers have been produced on a Yorkshire farm to meet the demand for jugs of the summer cocktail, which also features orange, strawberries and mint.
Cucumber grower David Schellingerhout, of Glen Avon Growers in Cottingham, East Yorkshire, said: “We’ve grown hundreds of extra cucumbers for The Patron’s Lunch, and have set aside rows and rows of them specifically for this event.
“I think the Queen will be extremely chuffed to know that it is great British cucumbers that are being served at The Patron’s Lunch right outside Buckingham Palace – and actually I think she’d expect nothing less.”
The Queen will attend the street party, which has been organised by her grandson Peter Phillips and features a carnival-style parade.
Here’s what all the prep looks like, in numbers:
* 30,000 glasses or 5,000 jugs of Pimm’s are expected to be served
* 130 bartenders will spend around 500 hours pouring drinks
* 180 kegs, each weighing 11kg, of draught Pimm’s will be used
* 540 bags of ice, each weighing 10kg
* 4,000 strawberries, 360 cucumbers, 400 oranges and 137 sprigs of mint
It’ll be quite a party.