True royalty doesn’t necessarily exist many places in the world but is still rings true at London’s Buckingham Palace, where the changing of the guard remains one of the city’s most cherished traditions.
In this week’s edition of Learn About in London in advance of the Oct. 28 Rams game against New England at Wembley Stadium; we take a look at Buckingham Palace and the changing of the guard.
All information courtesy of (www.changing-the-guard.com)
Buckingham Palace History
Buckingham Palace was built in 1702 by the Duke of Buckingham as his London home. The house was then later sold to George III in 1761 by the Duke's son.
In 1774 it was renamed "Queen's House" as Queen Charlotte resided there.
The Palace has of course seen many renovations and alterations, the first of which was in 1820 when Nash was commissioned by George IV.
Nash, one of the foremost architects of the day added a new suite of rooms facing west into the garden; this doubled the size of the building.
However the 'front' of the Palace, has remained virtually unchanged from the original design over 300 years ago.
Queen Victoria was the first monarch to take up residence in Buckingham Palace in 1837. Once again extensive changes took place.
Today Buckingham Palace is used not only as the home of The Queen and her husband, The Duke of Edinburgh, but also for the administrative work for the monarchy.
Buckingham Palace is the official London residence of the Sovereign. You can always tell if the Queen is in residence, look at the flagpole on top of the Palace, if the flag is flying then 'the Queen is at home'!
Her Majesty receives and entertains guests invited to the Palace in the State Rooms.
The State Rooms, opened to the Public for the first time in 1993, can be visited during the summer months.
Ceremonial Events in London
Ceremonial duties are an important part of Army history and tradition, and all soldiers undertaking these duties are highly trained soldiers who also play an important part in military operations worldwide.
BEATING THE RETREAT
11.00am - 'Changing the Queen’s Life Guard at Horse Guards Parade'
The mounted Regiments change The Queen’s Life Guard at the entrance to Horse Guards, daily at 11.00am (10.00am on Sundays only). There are two types of Queen’s Life Guard. A Long Guard consisting of 17 men is mounted when The Queen is resident in London; otherwise a Short Guard made up of 12 men is mounted.
11.00am - ' Changing the Guard at Windsor Castle'
Very similar to The Changing the Guard at Buckingham Palace, the Battalion of Foot Guards stationed at Windsor provides the daily Guard.
4.00pm - 'The 4 o’clock Parade Horse Guards'
Horseguards is the official entrance to Buckingham Palace. The Queen’s Life Guard is mounted here and is inspected daily at 4 o’clock.
10.00pm - The Ceremony of the Keys at the Tower of London
For over 700 years, the Tower has been locked every night and no one allowed in or out without the password.
The ceremony of 'The Keys' still takes place at 7 minutes to ten each night, when the
Chief Yeoman Warder, escorted by the military Guard, marches from the Byward Tower to lock the heavy wooden gates to the fortress.
The Household Division Massed Bands undertake Beating Retreat, usually in June. There are only 2 performances these take place at 6.30pm on Horse Guards Parade.
To mark the Sovereign’s official birthday the Trooping the Colour ceremony takes place at Horse Guards Parade in June each year.
Trooping the Colour is one of the greatest spectacles in the British calendar of ceremonial events, it is also known as 'The Queen's Birthday Parade'.
The State Opening of Parliament
Her Majesty The Queen opens the start of the parliamentary year, usually November or December.
The Lords Mayor’s Procession
A very colorful and musical spectacle, comprising floats, bands and ceremonial parades.
This is the third part in a series previewing the Rams' trip to London at the end of October.