Jubilee Gardens mark 20 year anniversary

Jubilee Gardens in Ely

Jubilee Gardens in Ely - Credit: EAST CAMBS COUNCIL

It was 20 years ago today (Friday February 11) that Jubilee Gardens, one of Ely’s most popular open spaces, was officially opened by HRH the Duke of Edinburgh.

The riverside gardens form part of a green corridor between the River Great Ouse and Ely City Centre and feature a bandstand, mature planting and a toddler play area.

They were created by East Cambridgeshire District Council following extensive public consultation.

Jubilee Gardens in Ely 

Jubilee Gardens in Ely - Credit: EAST CAMBS COUNCIL

They were officially opened in 2002 by the Duke of Edinburgh to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee.

Since then, they have been cared for by the district council with support from the Friends of Jubilee Gardens.

Each year, the Jubilee Gardens host a variety of events ranging from riverside concerts from local bands to the annual Ely Eel Day, which this year will be known as the Jubi-Eel Day and takes place on Sunday June 5. 

The gardens currently feature sixth in Trip Advisor’s top 10 Ely attractions and visitors to the city are encouraged to drop by to visit one of the eels on Ely’s Eel Trail.

The eel statue in Jubilee Gardens, Ely

The eel statue in Jubilee Gardens, Ely - Credit: EAST CAMBS COUNCIL

Since 2005, the gardens have also secured Green Flag status – an international award designed to reward standards of excellence and recognise the high-quality green space the gardens provide to the people of East Cambridgeshire.

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To help maintain biodiversity they also include a bug hotel, bird boxes and log piles.

Cllr Julia Huffer, chair of the operations committee at East Cambridgeshire District Council, said: “Over the past 20 years the Jubilee Gardens have become an established and much-loved feature in Ely. 

"As well as hosting some of our most popular events they are also a beautiful space where people can take a moment away from the pressures of life and reconnect with nature.

"This has been particularly important during the COVID-19 pandemic when people have been encouraged to spend quality time outdoors.

“The gardens are there for everyone to enjoy and I hope they will continue to be a loved and cherished part of our community for many years to come.”