One village has come up with a novel way of celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee – creating 104 royal-themed scarecrows.
The Herefordshire village of Wellington has been taken over by life-sized Queens, Prince Philips, and even royal guards for their gardens.
The village’s annual fun week will this year celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee with quizzes, picnics, fireworks and bingo – but the scarecrows will undoubtedly be the star of the show.
“The theme this year is kings, queens, princes, princesses or anything with a royal connection,” co-organiser Phil Smith, 68, said.
“For instance, the chapel in the village have done a display of William, the Queen, Philip and all the royal children as one display.
“We’ve probably got a dozen or so Queens dotted around… and a few Purple Rain Princes.”
An independent judge from outside of the village will assess the figures on Saturday night and announce the winner at a local picnic.
Other creations include Princess Fiona from the movie Shrek, Queen frontman Freddie Mercury, and Princess Leia from Star Wars.
Wellington Village Fun Week has been running since 1972, and first featured a scarecrow competition in 2006.
“Some of them are really impressive,” Mr Smith said.
“My personal one is the Queen with a parachute and she’s parachuting into my garden, she is stuffed with straw.
“Some people are so artistic and have such imaginative minds. Everyone seems to have grasped it really well.”
Mr Smith said it took him around four days to put together his scarecrow creation of the Queen, but stressed the competition was about the “taking part” for the villagers.
“(The prize) might be a couple of bottles of wine and a box of chocolates – the prizes aren’t important, although it is competitive,” he said.
“It’s the prestige, but it’s done in a light-hearted way – it’s banter more than anything.
“Everybody deserves to let their hair down a little bit. Two years of lockdown hasn’t been good for anybody but we’re just taking the opportunity to give something back and everybody has responded brilliantly.”
Mr Smith added that the Queen’s 70 years on the throne was something he “admired” about her.
“The admiration I think everyone’s got of the Queen, the fact she dedicated her life to the country and the fact that she’s actually stuck to her word for 70 years, I think everybody admires that and I think that’s what’s in my mind.”