On Wednesday 31st of May we celebrated our 130th anniversary, transforming the Buckingham Palace Gardens into a youth club for the afternoon. The day marked another very special milestone: 70 years of patronage from HRH The Duke of Edinburgh.
Over 250 people attended the event with a number of London Youth supporters and youth workers, as well as young people from more than 30 community and youth organisations across London. Guests were able to take part in a host of activities, from tennis and rock climbing to catapult-making.
While on a tour of the Palace Garden, Prince Philip was able to view several outdoor activities and creative projects, including an art wall portraying the things that inspire young people in London. The Duke also took the time to speak to different young people at each stage of his tour, finding out more about their youth clubs and experiences growing up in the capital.
To conclude, His Royal Highness watched a dance performance and cut a cake to mark the 130th Anniversary occasion. The celebration coincided with the first ever London History Day, co-ordinated by Historic England, and was a fantastic opportunity to put the role of youth organisations into the context of the capital’s rich history.
In a speech at the event, Sam Grant from Hillingdon Slipstreamers spoke of what inspires him: “Helping and coaching the children of this generation has reminded me of how I felt when I was member and I can relate to how they might feel to give them the best advice I can. This is more than just a club. It’s family to me and I don’t know where I would be without them.”
Discussing the positive impact that Prince Philip has had on young Londoners, Jas Hothi, Sports Development Officer at London Youth commented, “He gets it, that young people are being pulled in so many different directions and that they have to manage the minefield that is the world of youth, and that youth clubs offer them a place to make a sense of the world.”
For all in attendance being part of such a special event, celebrating two key milestones in London Youth’s history, will be a special memory that they can keep with them forever.
You can find out more information on London Youth’s 130th anniversary here.
Follow along with the latest news on Twitter via #LondonYouth130.