The Diamond Jubilee Songs of Praise


The Diamond Jubilee

As the Thames Pageant prepares to head for Greenwich, Aled Jones introduces hymns from the beautiful Old Royal Naval College Chapel.


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Transcript


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In just a couple of hours, this stretch of the River Thames

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will be teeming with over a thousand boats of all shapes and sizes,

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including this one I'm on - the Aberdonia.

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She was part of the heroic flotilla that rescued troops from Dunkirk

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in the Second World War

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and soon she'll be part of one of the largest flotillas

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ever seen on this river

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as the Diamond Jubilee Pageant reaches its climax.

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In today's special Songs Of Praise,

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we celebrate Her Majesty's Diamond Jubilee

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in a place steeped in royal history -

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the Old Royal Naval College

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in the newly-appointed Royal Borough of Greenwich.

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'Stand by for some splendid hymns with royal connections,

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'including one that's never sung by the Queen herself.

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'News of how everyone can present a lasting gift

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'to the Jubilee celebrations

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'and majestic music from special guests Amore and Laura Wright.'

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'The Old Royal Naval College here in Greenwich

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'is one of London's finest architectural treasures,

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'designed by Sir Christopher Wren.

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'It was originally the Royal Hospital for Seamen.

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'Today the site is open to the public and home to students

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'from Greenwich University

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'and Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance,

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'but the royal history isn't far away.'

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For over 200 years, a royal palace stood on this site,

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but did you know that Henry VIII was born here?

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As were his daughters, Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth I.

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And, if you're thinking to yourself, "I think I recognise all this,"

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well, you'd be right.

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It's been used as a backdrop for more than 30 Hollywood blockbusters,

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including Pirates of the Caribbean, The King's Speech

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and appropriately enough... The Queen!

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The real Queen has, of course, visited Greenwich many times.

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Most recently, Her Majesty opened the Cutty Sark after its major refit

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and 75 years ago, Princess Elizabeth accompanied her father George VI

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to open the National Maritime Museum.

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The chapel here is another architectural gem

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crowned, as you can see, by one of Wren's twin domes.

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But it's also home to a thriving worshipping community

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and it's where people from all over Greenwich

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have gathered for our hymns.

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Now, our first was chosen

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for Her Majesty's wedding to Prince Philip back in 1947.

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What a fine choice it is. Praise, My Soul, The King Of Heaven.

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Dr Lucy Worsley is chief curator of the Historic Royal Palaces

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and is here to help me discover more of the history

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that led to Greenwich being made a royal borough in this Jubilee year.

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Ever since medieval times, Greenwich has been a royal place -

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medieval kings and queens lived here.

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It's because of the bend on the river, it's strategically important,

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it's part of the defences of London

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and also, it's a lovely place, a pleasant place.

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The earliest palace here was called

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Bella Place or Beautiful Place.

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Greenwich has become a royal borough in this, the Diamond Jubilee year.

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What's it done to deserve this honour, then?

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Well, some people would say, "About time too, really,"

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cos it's always been a super-royal place.

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We've got royal palaces here of Henry VII, Henry VIII,

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James I, Charles II.

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Then it goes on being the Royal Naval College for such a long time,

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so it's about time, too.

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Back in the day, Henry VIII, then -

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would he have used this as a retreat?

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Well, Henry VIII particularly enjoyed himself at Greenwich.

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He had a sort of sports stadium with a tiltyard and armouries

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and all sorts of gardens and pleasure areas.

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But, in 1536, there's the famous incident at the Palace of Greenwich

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of Henry VIII's jousting accident.

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When he falls off his horse, he gets bumped on the head

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and he's unconscious for two hours.

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There is this theory that this caused a change in his personality,

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that this is the point where he goes from being the promising young prince

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and he becomes the evil, paranoid, psychopathic tyrant.

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If you look at the dates, it kind of works,

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cos it's from 1536, it's from this point onwards,

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that the pace of the execution of wives and of former friends

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really speeds up.

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So maybe it was the jousting accident at Greenwich

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that turned him into the tyrant.

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Henry's actions had profound consequences for our history,

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not least when he broke away from the Church in Rome,

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to found the Protestant Church of England.

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But there's one famous title bestowed on him

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that's been retained by every monarch since.

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The title "Fidei Defensor," FD - Defender of the Faith,

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-ironically this is given to Henry VIII by the Pope...

-Right.

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..before Henry said, "Bye-bye, I'm founding the Church of England,"

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but the Queen's still got it today.

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Have you got any coins in your pockets? Do you carry cash?

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Not a lot. Quite pitiful. What do you want?

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Let's have a look here.

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So here is the... coinage of the realm.

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-Here is "FD," she's still Defender of the Faith.

-Ah!

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-It's there, on a 10p.

-Mm.

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Like any anniversary, the Diamond Jubilee is a chance to reflect.

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Who can forget the Silver Jubilee in 1977

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and the Golden Jubilee just ten years ago?

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And in all this time her schedule has never slowed down.

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Did you know that the Queen has launched 21 ships,

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conferred 400,000 honours and awards,

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sat for an incredible 129 portraits

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and sent over half a million telegrams to couples,

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celebrating THEIR diamond wedding anniversaries?

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She's also been to countless church services across the world.

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The Royal Maundy service is held every year at a different cathedral.

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As Lord High Almoner, Bishop Nigel McCulloch

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is in attendance on the Queen during this very special day.

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I think that the Queen has the ability to inspire people.

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I notice at the Royal Maundy service

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she has this wonderfully radiant smile,

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and people feel immediately relaxed,

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combined with feeling maybe a little bit overwhelmed

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that the Sovereign is there in front of them.

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On the day of the Coronation, I was an 11-year-old boy

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and I remember going to a neighbour's house,

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it was really exciting because they had a television,

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this tiny little thing.

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We all sat down and looked at it throughout the day

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and, in fact, I've still got the souvenir of the service,

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which is something I really rather treasure.

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A whole host of things in this Coronation service

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that the Queen was given.

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The orb, the sceptre, the crown, of course...

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But one of the really important things

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from the point of view of Christian faith,

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was the presenting of the Holy Bible.

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The words are really important,

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because they end with this phrase -

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"We present you with this book.

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"The most valuable thing that this world affords."

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I think there's no doubt at all that the Queen's Christian faith

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is very significant.

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The things that she's said in Christmas broadcasts

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have made it very clear indeed that she has deep down,

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a very personal trust in God

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and that she does look to him for guidance

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in all that she does every day.

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This has been quite a weekend of amazing celebration

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but on Tuesday we come to what I think

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and I expect the Queen will see as the climax

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of all that we've been praising God for.

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And that's when we go to St Paul's Cathedral

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and all of us, in our different ways,

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thanking God for the 60 years

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that the Queen has reigned over us in this country.

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Here's a question - what presents do you give to a Queen

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for her Diamond Jubilee?

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Well, the Royal Commonwealth Society have a very innovative idea -

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a digital time capsule for people all over the Commonwealth

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to share their special memories of the last 60 years.

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I went along to the launch.

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Danny, tell us what's happening here this morning.

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Well, we're launching the Jubilee Time Capsule,

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which is the Royal Commonwealth Society's gift to Her Majesty

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to celebrate 60 years that she's played as Head of the Commonwealth.

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The capsule itself is a chance for anyone anywhere in the Commonwealth

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to contribute their stories and memories of the last 60 years,

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to share it with each other,

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but also share it with the Queen later this year.

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We've had people interviewing their grandparents

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for a special day for them.

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We've had people telling us about their first day at school,

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the birth of their baby brother or sister. Their first holiday.

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There's so many things that you can enter about.

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My head teacher gave me a letter and on the letter it said

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that I was going to Westminster Abbey for the Commonwealth Service.

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How exciting is that?! I will be in the same room as the Queen.

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On 6th August 1991, the World Wide Web was released.

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That's my most memorable date.

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12th March 2011 was a special day for me

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because it was my mum's 70th birthday

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and it was her first birthday party since she was 21.

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You know, walking into the Manchester stadium

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with the whole of the Welsh team behind me, carrying the dragon,

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was just very, very emotional.

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It says on the bus behind you that it's "the world's biggest history project." Is that right?

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This is a chance for two billion people who live around the Commonwealth

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to share their stories of the last 60 years.

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-We've already got 60-odd thousand entries...

-Wow.

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..and we're only a little bit shy

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of the biggest ever online time capsule

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and with the huge amount of interest and support

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for the Diamond Jubilee -

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not just in the UK but across the other 53 countries of the Commonwealth -

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we're pretty confident this is going to be the biggest ever.

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The Commonwealth is amazing

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because it's 54 countries from all around the world

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but representing all of the major faith groups in the world.

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It's an association that's so diverse,

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but yet there's so much shared history and values.

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The Queen's Diamond Jubilee is being celebrated all over the Commonwealth,

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all over the world, in fact,

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and this is a real way of people submitting their own memories of the last 60 years

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and creating a truly diverse capsule.

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The date I've chosen is 6th May 2011,

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which is the day I first voted for Singapore's general elections.

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I dreamed of the stars.

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I dreamed of travelling in space,

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but I never really thought that I'd have the opportunity.

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In 2002, we took off from Baikonur in Kazakhstan

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on a flight to the International Space Station.

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I think the Jubilee Time Capsule is a brilliant idea

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and there's still time to send in

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your favourite memory of the last 60 years.

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Just go to...

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Now, I'm going to record my own favourite memory,

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I'll get thinking about that,

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but first, a special performance from brand-new opera group Amore -

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We Will Stand Together.

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# We will stand together

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# Even through

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# The darkest hour

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# Destiny will guide us

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# And we'll dare

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# To raise our eyes

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# To Heaven

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# God will light our way

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# We shall win the day

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# We shall win the day

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# Then once again

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# The glorious

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# We will emerge

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# Victorious

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# Until then

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# Hand in hand

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# We'll let history

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# Know that

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# We will stand together

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# Even in

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# The darkest moment

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# Destiny will guide us

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# And we'll dare

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# To raise our eyes

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# To Heaven

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# History will say

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# We shall win the day

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# We shall win

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# The day

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# We will stand

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# Together

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# Till then. #

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My memory for the Jubilee Time Capsule

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involves Her Majesty and the song Memory.

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The first time I met the Queen was at a Royal Variety Performance. I was singing the song Memory

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and unfortunately during the second verse...I lost mine!

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I had to make the words up

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and came back to the originals for the third, fourth and fifth.

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I was petrified but thankfully the Queen said she didn't notice

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but she's always been very lovely to me -

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she even listens to my radio show.

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I feel very fortunate that there are many moments from my life and career

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that will live long in my memory.

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Songs Of Praise has, of course, given me so many over the years

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and, at the end of the programme, I'll have details of an event

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that's always a highlight, for me, anyway -

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this year's Big Sing at the Royal Albert Hall,

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so be sure to have a pen and paper handy.

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This year promises to be better than ever with great guests

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and, of course, some fabulous hymns.

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Like this one - All People That On Earth Do Dwell.

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A newly-composed song to celebrate

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the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the Commonwealth

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was performed at Westminster Abbey earlier in the spring,

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at a special service attended by the Queen and Prince Philip.

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Soprano Laura Wright was chosen to sing the song.

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'To perform in Westminster Abbey for the Queen, was just...'

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I think it's the highlight of my career, so far.

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Were you nervous?

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Yeah, I was very nervous

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but I think something about that building and that place,

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I just felt a real sense of calm when I stood up to actually perform.

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So, tell me a bit about the song.

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It's called Stronger As One

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and it tries to encompass everything about the Commonwealth

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and what that represents,

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so obviously it was a pleasure to sing it for the Queen,

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the Head of the Commonwealth herself.

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There was some very important people there on the day as well,

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so I was very nervous but I think...

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The song is this beautiful piece of music

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that every time you sing it and I perform it,

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this smile just creeps across my face, that's why I love it so much.

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# From Echo Bay to Kanye

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# Bartica to Bairiki

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# Flowing as one

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# Where any dream can live on

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# With old and with new

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# It is the voice that rings true

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# Oh-oh

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# Calling us

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# Making us one

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# Heart and a soul

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# Shining as gold

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# Under one sun

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# We're stronger as one

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# Montego Bay to Savai'i

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# Sullom Voe to Kalahari

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# Oceans may part

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# But every river must start

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# In valley and hill

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# We are the people who will

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# Oh-oh

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# Come now

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# Joining as one

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# Heart and a soul

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# Shining as gold

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# Under one sun

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# We're stronger as one

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# In the rise and the fall

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# Of echoed words in great halls

0:28:100:28:16

# Nations may dawn

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# But it is we who are born

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# All equal and free

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# With the power to see

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# Oh-oh

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# Who among many has one

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# Heart and a soul

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# Shining as gold

0:28:470:28:51

# Under one sun

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# We're stronger as one

0:28:550:29:01

# Heart and a soul

0:29:010:29:06

# Shining as gold

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# We're stronger as one

0:29:110:29:16

# Stronger...

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# As one. #

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Let us pray.

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God of time and eternity,

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whose son reigns as servant, not master,

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we give you thanks and praise that you have blessed this nation,

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the realms and territories

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with Elizabeth, our beloved and glorious Queen.

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In this year of Jubilee,

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grant her your gifts of love and joy and peace

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as she continues in faithful obedience to you, her Lord and God

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and in devoted service to her lands and peoples,

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and those of the Commonwealth,

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now and all the days of her life

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through Jesus Christ our Lord.

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ALL: Amen

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We end our Diamond Jubilee celebration here

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at the Old Royal Naval College

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with an anthem that's probably sung

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every day, somewhere across the world.

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It dates back to the 18th century and was first publicly performed

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here in London, in 1745.

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So familiar is it, that it's easy to forget

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that the words are a prayer -

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that God may bless our Queen and that she may long reign over us.

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After 60 years of faithful service and example, I say "Amen" to that.

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A fitting finale to our Diamond Jubilee programme.

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Now, as promised, it's that special time of year when I can announce

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how to apply for tickets for this year's Big Sing,

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which takes place on Sunday 9th September

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at the Royal Albert Hall here in London.

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The all-important

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ticket line number is...

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Calls cost up to 5p a minute

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from most land lines.

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An additional connection fee

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may also apply.

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Calls from mobiles may cost

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considerably more.

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For more details or to apply online,

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please go to our website...

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As usual, we'll be singing some great hymns

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in the company of the first 5,000 to get tickets,

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so if you want to be one of them, get dialling quick!

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If you can't be there - don't worry, you'll have a front row seat wherever you are

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if you tune in and watch.

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I'll see you there. Bye for now.

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'Next week...

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'Pam celebrates an anniversary of a different kind -

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'50 years of the architectural masterpiece, Coventry Cathedral.

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'She meets someone who helped to design it

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'and discovers why this place of worship

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'known internationally for its work for peace

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'has special links with a Royal Naval warship.'

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Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

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As the Thames Pageant prepares to head for Greenwich, Aled Jones introduces hymns from the beautiful Old Royal Naval College Chapel, operatic quartet Amore and Laura Wright, who sings the new Commonwealth song, Stronger As One.


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