Yes, being overlooked for a gong will be disappointing, but this is a time for celebration

Whee – it’s party time.

The Brits have got the idea. They are in full party mode, celebrating her Majesty’s birthday and 60 years on the throne.

But the celebrations have been somewhat soured for Alf.

The weekend was to have been special. We would be treated on Monday morning to checking out who got what from the Queen’s Birthday and Diamond Jubilee Honours List.

Alf was eagerly looking forward to learning he had become Sir Alfred.

It isn’t going to happen.

Mrs Grumble has told him (a) the awards were accidentally posted on a government website for a while and (b) Alf isn’t on the list.

There isn’t the slightest hint even of a minor gong.

Things have gone horribly wrong, obviously.

As Radio NZ reports –

The list is meant to be kept under wraps until Monday 4 June.

And –

Honours are awarded in New Zealand at New Years and Queen’s Birthday to recognise New Zealanders’ services to their field or community. The list is sent out early under strict embargo to media organisations.

But the embargo wasn’t too strictly observed by the tosser who posted the list accidentally.

Newstalk ZB is saying media outlets have been given a pat on the back for not taking advantage of the major botch-up.

Newstalk ZB discovered the company responsible for managing the Government press releases mistakenly put the full list on the internet well ahead of next Monday’s publication date.

United Future leader Peter Dunne says the mistake took him by surprise.

“I’ve been impressed by the fact that everyone in the media to my knowledge has honoured the embargo and not seized the opportunity of the mistake to have a pre-run on the honours list.”

The list has been taken down from the web and has also removed from Google’s cache search facility.

But a fellow blogger is playing funny buggers with the authorities, and is refusing a Government request to take down a link to the Queen’s Birthday and Diamond Jubilee Honours List.

This isn’t playing the game as it should be played.

Deputy Secretary of Cabinet Michael Webster says it has asked the person they think is responsible to remove the material but the blogger has refused.

The department is still looking into the exact cause of how the material was prematurely published online and found by the blogger.

Find the bugger responsible and throw him into the dingiest cell in The Tower, Alf demands.

But while we try to sort out what went wrong, the news from Britain is cheering.

As Britain readies itself for the once-in-a-lifetime Diamond Jubilee this weekend, the Daily Mail reports, people up and down the country are getting in the mood to celebrate.

And it seems that age is no barrier to making the most of the Queen’s grand hurrah.

From primary school pupils up to those who might well soon receive their own congratulatory letters from Her Majesty for making it to the ripe old age of 100, the people of Britain are gearing up for a knees-up like no other.

But hey.

Don’t forget we Monarchy buffs Down Under.

The splendid bunch of people at Monarchy New Zealand has sent their best wishes to The Queen of New Zealand.

They have banged out a media release to say this weekend also sees celebrations in this country for the 60th anniversary of the accession of The Queen.

This Diamond Jubilee is being widely marked throughout New Zealand and the Commonwealth. Communities and associations around New Zealand are celebrating the Jubilee in different ways. A number of events have already gained significant attention, and nationwide celebrations will be taking place over this weekend. Special Diamond Jubilee beacons will be lit across the country, a street party will cast the limelight on the Kapiti Coast, and celebratory lunches will be held in honour of The Queen in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, to name a small section of events.

The media statement also pointed out that Elizabeth II is only the second Sovereign of New Zealand to have reigned for 60 years; Queen Victoria celebrated her Diamond Jubilee in 1897.

Together, these two Queens have reigned for 121 of the 172 years since the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Monarchy New Zealand, of course, was looking forward to the announcement of the new Queen’s Birthday and Diamond Jubilee Honours list (and no doubt will be a bit sour at the accidental premature posting of the list).

This will not only feature four Additional Members to the Order of New Zealand, our most prestigious award, but it will also highlight and celebrate the huge achievements and successes of Kiwis from all walks of life.

For some time, Monarchy New Zealand has been encouraging government officials to recognise the role of New Zealand’s Royal Family in the life of the nation. It is traditional to bestow honours on them to recognise their service to the realm. “No one in the Royal Family receives a salary for the work they do.

“They do not cost New Zealand taxpayers a cent and they are at the nation’s service at all times. An award to recognise many years of service would be a nice gesture,” said Dr Sean Palmer, Chair of Monarchy New Zealand.

“Prince Philip and Prince Charles were made Extra Companions of the Queen’s Service Order years ago, but a more senior honour would be an appropriate ‘thank you’ and would be noticed around the world.

“When Prince Philip and Prince Charles wear their uniforms, the most visible decorations are those from New Zealand. That’s an excellent advertisement for New Zealand that the whole world sees on some of the most famous and most photographed people in the world.”

Good stuff.

He might have mentioned his recognition of Alf’s high regard for the monarchy, huge contribution to the welfare of his community, and entitlement to a gong.

Maybe he just forgot in the excitement.

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