Jubilee Beacon lit at Preston's BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir Hindu temple to mark Queen's Platinum Jubilee

Lancashire’s Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner and a Hindu temple volunteer joined together to light a beacon in Preston to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

By Fiona Finch
Friday, 3rd June 2022, 3:45 pm
The lighting of the Jubilee Beacon at Preston's  BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir Hindu temple
The lighting of the Jubilee Beacon at Preston's BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir Hindu temple

Last night’s event had been organised by the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir on Pramukh Swami Place, as its own special tribute to the Queen.

The beacon was lit by Deputy Commissioner Andrew Pratt and volunteer Vinubhai G. Limbachia.

Spokeswoman Kailash Parekh said: “It was part of a unique community celebration organised by the mandir to pay its own personal

A bumper celebration at the Beacon lighting at the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir Hindu temple in Preston.

tribute to The Queen during her Platinum Jubilee.”

She continued: “The event started with a special prayer for Her Majesty the Queen followed by a countdown to light the beacon with all the devotees. The ceremony ended by singing the National Anthem in unison.”

Afterwards Andy Pratt said: “It was a privilege to light the beacon which represents hope, prosperity and happiness.”

Neetal Parekh, a lead BAPS volunteer, added: “Her Majesty’s longevity of leadership has provided comfort and assurance to the nation. We are delighted to have all BAPS Hindu mandirs around the UK join in the international celebrations and pay tribute to her seven decades of uncompromising public service.”

Celebrating the Queen's Platinum Jubilee at the Preston Hindu temple the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir

Beacons were lit by charities, communities and faith groups across the UK and in Commonwealth capitals last night, including a main beacon at Buckingham Palace.

A beacon lighting at the BAPs Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in London, known as the Neasden Temple, featured on the national TV news.

The Preston lighting ceremony coincided with the start of a series of yagnas, Vedic peace prayers offered to a sacred flame, which marked the centennial birth anniversary of His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the inspirer of the Mandir in Preston. Kailash added: “ He also lived a life dedicated to selfless service, embodying his teaching ‘In the joy of others lies our own.’ ”

Lancashire’s Director of Public Health Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, his wife Dr Sathiya Karunanithi and Mrs Heather Pratt were among specially invited guests.

Celebrating the Queen's Diamond Jubilee at the Beacon lighting

The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Preston provides educational, community and spiritual activities for children, youths, families and the elderly and is a focal place of worship for hundreds of Hindus in the Lancashire area.

Youngsters mark the Queen's Platinmum Jubilee with a celebration at the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir in Preston
A time for celebration at the Beacon lighting at the Swaminarayan Mandir in Preston