The London 2012 Olympics Close With A Party!

Closing Ceremony London 2012

Fireworks light up the Olympic Stadium and close out the London 2012 Olympic Games

17 days of London 2012 Olympic events closed yesterday with a celebration of British pop music through the past several decades. From the Spice Girls to Annie Lennox to a video tribute to John Lennon, a wide variety of music genres and legends were honoured during the celebration. The pageantry and showmanship were undeniably British and will surely not be forgotten. Looking back we tried to come up with some of our favourite memories of these Olympics and after some debate here are just a few of the moments we came up with:

Chad Le Clos of South Africa beating Michael Phelps in the 200m Butterfly by .05 seconds!

Kirani James taking home Grenada’s first EVER Olympic medal – which just happened to be gold in the Men’s 400m.

Stephen Kiprotich winning the Men’s Marathon and Uganda’s first gold medal since 1972!

The Canadian Women’s Football Team coming back from a heartbreaking defeat in the semi-finals to win a historic bronze medal.

Indian wrestler Sushil Kumar became the first Indian athlete to take home a medal in successive games!

Sally Pearson reacted fantastically to winning gold for Australia in the women’s Hurdles and her celebration was a defining image of the Games.

These are just a few of the moments we loved from London 2012 but there were so many more to choose from!

While we’re disappointed that the Games are over, we are definitely looking forward to the Paralympic Games in a few weeks time! In the meantime, we would love to see your best memories from London 2012! What events had you on the edge of your seat? Did any winners surprise you? Tell us about your favourite Olympic memories on the Jubilee Time Capsule!


It’s the Summer of Sport!

This summer is turning out to be the ‘Summer of Sport’ with major sporting events taking place all over the world in all different sports. We at the JTC are currently going sports-mad and can’t get enough! With Euro 2012,Wimbledon, ICC World Twenty20, ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup, Formula One, Rugby Summer Tours and last but by no means least – the London 2012 Olympics – we won’t have to do without sport for a single day this summer.

The Jubilee Time Capsule has an entire Sports Gallery full of fantastic sports-related memories from primary school football matches to World Cups. These are some of our favourite sports entries in celebration of the Summer of Sport:

South Africa World Cup 2010

The World Cup 2010 in South Africa was a landmark event for both South Africa and the whole African continent.

While we here in England haven’t experienced the joy of hosting or winning a World Cup since 1966 (sore subject), one of the Commonwealth family hosted it just 2 years ago. The 2010 World Cup in South Africa was a landmark sporting event as it was the first World Cup hosted by an African nation. Lungile Ntuli from South Africa submitted her entry about the legacy of the World Cup inSouth Africa and its symbolic significance.

1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne Australia

The 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne were Australia’s first time hosting and the first during Queen Elizabeth II’s reign!

This summer marks one of the most anticipated sporting events – the London 2012 Olympics. The first Olympic Games during Queen Elizabeth II’s reign were held in Melbourne in 1956. Alison Vile has submitted her memories of moving to Melbourne in 1956 and attending Olympic events as part of a school group (We bet a lot of schoolchildren wish that were the case this summer!)

India Win the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup!

India defeat Sri Lanka in the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup Final!

We would venture a guess that cricket is the most competitive Commonwealth sport. This summer will see the ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup in Australia. We have loads of great entries about exciting cricket matches and we particularly like this entry from Ananya Sivaraman about their home nation, India, taking home top honours at the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup!

The Vanuatu Beach Volleyball Team aim for the London 2012 Olympics

The Vanuatu Beach Volleyball Team aim to qualify for the London 2012 Olympics.

While we have some fantastic entries from people who watch their favourite athletes compete – we also have fantastic entries from the athletes themselves! We have received inspiring entries from Parathletes Oscar Pistorious and Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson as well as Olympic hopefuls – the Vanuatu Beach Volleyball Team!

Sports are one of the best ways citizens of the Commonwealth can come together, whether it’s watching a match, supporting the same team or actually playing sports together – sports are important in every Commonwealth nation. For our Summer of Sport, we would love to see all of YOUR sports memories on the Jubilee Time Capsule!

Sadia’s Commonwealth Jubilee Tea Party

Sadia's Commonwealth Jubilee Tea Parties

We’re excited that the Royal Museums Greenwich will be hosting a number of Commonwealth Jubilee Tea Parties where guests can enjoy afternoon tea whilst recording their memories for the Jubilee Time Capsule!

Artist Sadia Ur-Rehman and Museum staff will host party guests in the sumptuous Orangery in The Queen’s House for afternoon tea, fancy snacks and Commonwealth-themed parlour games including ‘Queenie’s Quiz’ and the coin game. Guests will also be given the opportunity to contribute memories to the Jubilee Time Capsule.

Three Commonwealth Jubilee Tea Parties will be held, each with a different theme. On Sunday 20 May there will be an English-style Tea Party, there will then be a Kenyan-style Tea Party on Sunday 27 May, and finally an Indian-style Tea Party on Saturday 2 June.

To book your place, or for further information click here or call the RMG bookings office on 020 8312 6608.

Prince Harry enters the Jubilee Time Capsule!

Prince Harry visit to Jamaica - PA

Prince Harry visit to Jamaica – PA

We are thrilled that HRH Prince Harry has shown his support for the Jubilee Time Capsule by submitting three memories to the project.

Prince Harry’s entries joins more than 62,000 other items -including a submission from his cousin Princess Eugenie – already contributed to the JTC from people of all ages around the Commonwealth.

The Queen’s grandson’s entries are reflections on his first solo overseas tour, officially
representing “my grandmother” during Her Diamond Jubilee year.

The Prince says he is “very sad to leave” Belize, says he has “totally fallen for Jamaica and its people”, and says he “loved every second” of his time in the Bahamas.

To see these personal letters of thanks to The Governors General of Jamaica, Belize and the Bahamas, click here.

Jubilee Time Capsule wins prestigious award!

Danny Sriskandarajah accepting the Commonwealth Jubilee Award

Danny Sriskandarajah accepting the Commonwealth Jubilee Award

The Jubilee Time Capsule (JTC) has been recognised for the outstanding contribution it is making to the countries, organisations, citizens and values of the Modern Commonwealth.

On Thursday 26th April, Danny Sriskandarajah, the RCS Director, and Catherine Clark, the JTC Project Manager, attended the Nexus Commonwealth Awards 2012, where they were delighted to be presented with the Commonwealth Jubilee Award.

The Award reflects the continued success of the Jubilee Time Capsule, and its contribution to the Commonwealth. To read more about the Award, click here.

Highlights from Commonwealth Day Observance 2012

Commonwealth Day Observance 2012

Commonwealth Day Observance 2012 BBC School Report/Rolf Marriott

An exciting day was had by all at last Monday’s Commonwealth Day Observance. Her Majesty The Queen was joined by The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall and The Countess of Wessex for the celebrations in Westminster Abbey.

2,000 guests, including 1,000 students, were also present to enjoy the celebrations, which included a powerful rendition of ‘Halleluja’ from Canadian singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright and an impressive performance from South African jazz musician Hugh Masekela.

Guests were also treated to a performance from the Descarga Dance Company, a heartfelt speech from renowned primatologist Dr Jane Goodall, who emphasised the importance of protecting our planet, and an address from award-winning Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngoze Adichie, who spoke on the importance of recognising diversity.

The Queen’s prerecorded Commonwealth Day Message 2012, in which she talks about the benefits of “today’s technology-based world” and “connecting cultures”, was also played to the assembled guests.

The speech was especially relevant to the 1,000 students, given that each of them – including the three who presented posies to The Queen, The Duchess of Cornwall and The Countess of Wessex – had won their tickets to the Observance by taking part in the Jubilee Time Capsule.

A short video of Jubilee Time Capsule highlights, was screened before the Observance started, giving guests an opportunity to spot their entries on the Abbey’s big screens.

And given the excited feedback from the students, the positive comments from assembled guests, and The Queen’s smile, it’s safe to conclude that this year’s Commonwealth Day Observance was a resounding success!

History, Culture & Digital Innovation: Commonwealth Day Observance 2012

Commonwealth Day Observance 2011

Today people across the globe will be marking Commonwealth Day, an annual celebration that has been held on the second Monday in March since 1977. From Antigua to Australia, the day will be commemorated in each of the 54 Commonwealth nations.

In the UK, the annual inter-faith Observance, organised by the Royal Commonwealth Society, is being held in Westminster Abbey. The event is Britain’s largest inter-faith gathering and representatives from every major religion in the Commonwealth take part.

Today’s Commonwealth Day Observance takes on an extra special significance, as it kicks off the Commonwealth’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations in front of Her Majesty The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall and the Countess of Wessex.

1,000 children from schools and youth groups will also attend the Observance. Each student present – including the three young people who will present posies to The Queen, the Duchess of Cornwall and the Countess of Wessex – has submitted an entry to the Royal Commonwealth Society’s ambitious digital history project, the Jubilee Time Capsule, which will be sealed later in the year and presented to The Queen as an innovative legacy of the Diamond Jubilee.

The students’ Jubilee Time Capsule entries will be displayed in the Abbey in a short film before the Observance starts and includes stories about migration, family weddings and The Queen.

In-keeping with this year’s Commonwealth theme, Connecting Cultures, there will also be performances from some of the Commonwealth’s most renowned cultural icons, including South African jazz musician and civil rights activist Hugh Masekela, and Canadian singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright.

This combination of history, culture and digital innovation promises to truly get the Commonwealth’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations off to a spectacular start!