Thousands of JCB employees are gearing up for a right Royal celebration to mark the Coronation of HM King Charles III and HM Queen Camilla, with a company-wide ‘street party’.
JCB is treating more than 5,500 employees at all its UK factories to a two-course celebration lunch next week. The ‘Big Coronation Lunch’ is being staged at the company’s plants in Staffordshire, Derbyshire and Wrexham where breaks are being extended to allow the historic occasion to be marked in style.
JCB Chairman Lord Bamford said: “The Coronation really is a momentous event in our country’s history and an opportunity for all of us to come together and mark it as a team in traditional street party style.”
Factory restaurants are being decked out with red, white and blue bunting and balloons ready for classic British cuisine to be served on traditional street party trestle tables. Employees will tuck into fish and chips, sausage and mash, a special Coronation Chicken pie or enjoy a special afternoon tea. A regal fruit crumble and trifle will be offered as dessert.
Qazi Mustafa, aged 18, from Derby, is a technician apprentice currently working at World HQ in Rocester, Staffs. He said: “It’s good that JCB is marking the occasion – it is a big change in history after all. I’m looking forward to going to the lunch – it will be a nice change. It’s good to celebrate with colleagues.”
Toolmaker apprentice Jimmy Hopkinson, aged 17, from Cheadle, Staffs, who also works at the World HQ, said: “I will be celebrating the Coronation at home, but it’s great to get the chance to celebrate it at work as well.”
Business degree apprentice Rebecca Brooks, aged 20, from Ipstones, near Leek, Staffs, who is based at the JCB World HQ, said: “It is a very generous act by Lord Bamford and JCB to put on the lunch, and really appreciated across the workforce. I think it will be a great way to kick-start celebrations for the week. There will be a great atmosphere when we all come together.”
Ella Taylor, aged 19, from Stafford, a Material Planner at JCB Power Products, in Hixon, near Stafford, said: “It is good of JCB to show its support for the Coronation and dedicate time for the employees celebrate.”
Sean Tucker, 20, of Rocester, Staffs, is a welder at JCB Cab Systems in Uttoxeter. He said: “The Big Coronation Lunches are a fantastic idea – it will be great to get together with my colleagues to celebrate the memorable occasion. It’s brilliant that the food on offer will be traditionally British – I’m going to go for the fish and chips!”
Libby Hodge, 18, of Uttoxeter, is a JCB Purchasing apprentice. She said: “It’s really nice that JCB has decided to enable everyone to celebrate together. It’s a great opportunity for us all to enjoy the fun atmosphere on the run-up to the big day. I remember enjoying a street party for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee – this will be a chance to get in the mood again, with the extra bonus of having the Monday off.”
Carol Williams, General Manager for JCB’s catering contractor Elior, said: “This really will be a royal celebration to remember. Not surprisingly, given it’s a very British occasion, more than half of those attending have selected fish and chips for their main course!”
Over the course of the four-day street party, the team will prepare and serve almost one tonne of potatoes, 172 kgs of chicken, 293 kgs of fish, and 125 kgs of sausage.