W ith just a week or so to go until the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, it's too late now to plan a street party if you haven't already done so.
Most local council's will require at least four to 12 weeks' notice of a street party and there are applications and permissions to be carried out.
But if you've left it too late, then don't despair! Why not get family and friends and organise a party at your own home?
You don't need a big budget and there's plenty of time to plan.
Here's a few ideas to get you started:
Decorations the first thing your guests will see is your decor, so make sure you go to town – without breaking the bank. Most supermarkets and lots of party shops have cheap bunting, Union flags and posters. Or if you're feeling creative you can make your own bunting, paper chains and decorations – anything goes as long as it's red, white and blue!
Flags assuming you'll be watching the Jubilee coverage on TV at some point, everyone will want a flag to wave, especially the kids. Again, you can get cheap packs of Union flags from supermarkets and markets so no one needs to be left empty-handed.
Tableware If you can, pick up some Union flag paper plates and cups from a supermarket. They are inexpensive and look great laid out on your kitchen table. You can get red and blue plastic cutlery too, but plain white, or your own silver cutlery, will do just fine too. Make sure you get a themed paper table cloth to add to the mood, just a plain red one will look nice and might be cheaper than a multi-coloured one. You can also get cheap, coloured straws and napkins too to finish off your Royal look.
For the kids the youngsters may not want to watch hours of TV coverage, so it's best to plan a few activities to keep them amused. You can get the kids colouring some pictures of the Queen or a Union Jack – lots are available to download for free from the internet. You could set up a craft table filled with paper, card, felt tips, glitter and glue in the three colours and see what they come up with. Or you could get them making their own flags and bunting.
You could also get the little ones playing the traditional games that kids would have played in the 1950s when the Queen came to the throne – such as It, hop scotch, hide and seek, jacks, leap frog, marbles, yo-yo's, and cowboys and Indians.
Outfits If you want to go to town, then you could ask people to dress up as member of the Royal family and everyone has to guess who they are! Or a simple red, white and blue theme is one that most people should find easy to stick to. If you fancy a bit of fun, lots of party internet sites sell cardboard cut-out faces of the key Royals.