The Buckley Jubilee committee has announced that the procession route will be shortened for the first time in 166 years. 

The annual Buckey Jubilee will take place on July 12 with schools across the town shutting for the day to allow for celebrations.

The jubilee celebration was founded in 1857 and is traditionally held on the second Tuesday in July. 

According to the Buckley Town Council website: "It is an institution in which the citizens of Buckley are justly proud."

The celebrations have looked very different over the past two years as a result of the pandemic. The committee encouraged residents to follow the route with their own friends and family throughout Jubilee week

The Leader: Buckley Jubilee processionBuckley Jubilee procession

The normal route for the procession leads participants across all churches and chapels across Buckley however this year the Jubilee Planning Committee has announced a shortened route. 

A spokesperson on the Jubilee Planning Committee said the reason for the change is influenced by the aging population of the church community and those who are involved in the procession. 

In a statement, the Jubilee Planning Committee said: "Unfortunately, even prior to the pandemic, numbers supporting the event had declined significantly."

"With this in mind it has been decided to shorten the route; it is hoped more people will feel able to complete the walk and those watching will be concentrated into a smaller area."

The Leader: Shortened route for Buckley Jubilee ProcessionShortened route for Buckley Jubilee Procession

However, this decision has prompted debate on the public facebook group Buckley Development Forum. 

One commenter said: "It’s an absolute shame after all these years that the procession has changed".

Another commented: "I’m not really a church person but to think someone has changed it after all this time is a disgrace."

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However in contrast another said: "Congregations are aging and a lot cannot walk the original route."

The Jubilee celebrations begin with The Jubilee Shield Service at Our Lady of the Rosary on Sunday, July 10, at 9am and conclude with Jubilee Hymn Singing at St Matthew’s Church on Sunday, July 17 at 6.30pm.

On the 12th, a service will be held at the common at 3pm followed by the procession led by the Royal Buckley Town Band and will then make its way around the centre of the town and back to The Common.

The Leader:

The event involves members of the churches of Buckley alongside school groups and other participants.

The revised route will see the procession turn around outside Bistre Emmanuel Church (rather than at the top of the Pren Hill) before proceeding through the centre of Buckley, then turning left after the pedestrianised area onto Argoed Road and returning to The Common.

READ MORE: Buckley Jubilee will go ahead this summer - with some changes

The Jubilee Committee said they "urge the people of Buckley to join them on this special day; anyone who wishes to join in with the procession would be very welcome - children under 16 should bring an adult with them.

"Thanks go to all who make the event possible including St John Ambulance, Royal Buckley Town Band, Buckley Town Council, Flintshire County Council Street Scene and North Wales Police."

Any money raised is to be donated to Alder Hey Children's Hospital.