The Queen will light the final beacon from the concert stage after a host of stars perform in her honour later tonight.
Beacons in New Zealand and Tonga were the first to be set ablaze, followed by Australia, where Prime Minister Julia Gillard lit the torch, and other nations in the Commonwealth.
Bruno Peek, Pageantmaster of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee beacons, hailed the number of communities who registered to hold celebration bonfires as "truly amazing" and easily surpassed the 2,012 they hoped to attract.
After the pop stars have paid a musical tribute to the monarch in the shadow of Buckingham Palace, the Queen will walk out in front of the crowds and set the national beacon ablaze.
Among the locations for beacons is the highest school in England, Flash primary in the Peak District.
The school with only seven pupils was the first to receive permission to put up a beacon as part of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations.
The youngsters who live in a community which is 1,518ft above sea level wrote to the Queen to thank her and invite her along.
She wrote back expressing her gratitude and her regrets that she could not make it. So they made their own version of Her Majesty instead - out of cardboard boxes.
The pupils, who will be joined by youngsters from an associate school nearby, have special permission to stay up late to ignite their gas-fired beacon, which will stand on the hill above their school. They will press the button around 10.15pm.
Deputy head Anne Collins said: "Everyone has loved this experience so much. The children have been told why it is so important. Even they will probably never experience anything like this again in their lives.
"We might only be a tiny little school in a tiny little village but we have a big role to play in these celebrations. We can't wait for our beacon to cast a bright light across the Peak District.
"We will never forget this and we are making the most of the whole event."
The children have been making flags, designing royal mugs, making red white and blue cakes and drawing their own pictures of what the occasion means to them.
Head teacher Sue Evans said: "We have fought so hard to keep our small school open. We are so proud that we are not only flourishing, but we are lighting the way for a big part of the celebrations."
Pageantmaster of the Beacons, Bruno Peak, said: "This was the first place to be accepted for a beacon because as the highest school in the UK - it is a perfect location.
"The Queen is very keen to ensure that the celebrations include all ages."
Michael, 10, said: "The Queen has been on the throne for 60 years and that is amazing."