The highest tribute! Steve Cram to light Jubilee beacon on 2,000 foot peak

One of the highest beacons in Northumberland is set to be lit in Kielder Water and Forest Park to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

The lofty tribute by Forestry England and Kielder Observatory will be ignited by athletics legend Steve Cram CBE at 21.45 on Thursday 2 June.  Its spectacular location on top of 2,000 foot Deadwater Fell will mean it is visible for hundreds of square miles across the Borders between Scotland and England.

It is one of 1,500 so called “anchor beacons” being lit across the UK and Commonwealth in a major initiative being co-ordinated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Kielder Observatory has also linked up with forest chiefs to provide a spectacular public viewpoint of the occasion across the valley.  

Alex MacLennan, Recreation and Public Affairs Manager in Northumberland for Forestry England, commented:

“From the summit it’s said that you can see both the Solway Firth and the North Sea on a clear day so we could hardly have found a better place to light the beacon.  It’s a real privilege for everyone at Kielder to be part of this special celebration and we are also thrilled to have Steve Cram doing the honours.  It will be a fabulous sight and we’ve got fingers' crossed for good weather." 

Catherine Johns, Chief Executive Officer of Kielder Observatory, added:

“We’re excited to join in the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. Kielder Observatory will be such an inspirational place to witness the beacon being lit and be part of this historic event. We’ll also be livestreaming the beacon lighting from one of our telescopes, subject to the weather being clear, for those who are unable to attend.”

Tickets for the event are free and can be booked at Priority will be given to people who live in the Kielder and the North Tyne areas but anyone can register in case spaces become available. 

1.    Beacons have been lit at Jubilees dating all the way back to 1897.  The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors has a long-standing involvement with them. At each Jubilee, RICS is asked to light the anchor chain of beacons spanning the length and breadth of all four nations of the UK.   More details at

2.    Forestry England manages and cares for the nation’s 1,500 woods and forests, with over 235 million visits per year. As England’s largest land manager, we shape landscapes and are enhancing forests for people to enjoy, wildlife to flourish and businesses to grow. For more information visit Forestry England is an agency of the Forestry Commission.

3.    Kielder Observatory is managed by the Kielder Observatory Astronomical Society. Its mission is to create opportunities for people of all backgrounds and abilities to experience moments of inspiration, revelation, wonder and hope through observing the cosmos. It was established in 2008 to host a few events per year for a few hundred people - it now opens 360 days per year and hosts 730 events which attract more than 20,000 people. The Kielder team also work in schools to inspire and educate students.  Visit

The highest tribute! Steve Cram to light Jubilee beacon on 2,000 foot peak