Thursday, September 6, 2018

Marching Towards The Hill

From late June to late August, the Ceremonial Guard conducts a changing of the guard ceremony each morning on Parliament Hill. The military group is made up of two units, the Canadian Grenadiers and the Governor General's Foot Guards. They conduct this ceremony through the day at Rideau Hall on a smaller scale, but at ten in the morning on the Hill, the ceremony commences. One part of the group is up on the Hill, while the rest march out from the Cartier Square drill hall, up Elgin Street, around the War Memorial and over to Parliament Hill. I photographed them one morning coming up Elgin. City police on motorbikes ride ahead and behind to stop traffic, while soldiers in working uniforms walk alongside or drive in accompanying cars. In the background, the British High Commission stands to the left, while the three buildings collectively called The Chambers are to the right.

Much of the group are carrying musical instruments, playing as they go along. The rest carry their arms.

They passed by me, with the War Memorial on the other side, and turned up the street at the Chateau Laurier to move west.

And here they are heading towards the Hill. Their departure from the drill hall is timed so that this part of the Guard arrives on the Hill precisely at ten. Tomorrow I'll show you the ceremony itself, as I went up the following day to photograph that.


  1. I like their striking red uniform.

  2. Uniformes muito bonitos e gosto bastante destas bandas musicais.
    Continuação de uma boa semana.

    Dedais de Francisco e Idalisa
    O prazer dos livros

  3. Gotta love a parade. Those were some precision lines!


  4. ...when I was a boy I had some tin soldiers just like these.

  5. Hello, it is a cool sight to see. It reminds me of the guard at Buckingham Palace. Great photos. Happy Thursday, enjoy your day!

  6. @Nancy: they certainly stand out in a crowd.

    @Francisco: thank you.

    @Marianne: and quite orderly.

    @Janis: they've got it well timed.

    @Tom: that would not surprise me.

    @Eileen: it's based very much on that British tradition.

  7. I wish we had something similar in Washington, DC. Wonder why they stop doing it in September.

  8. There is something very stirring about this!

  9. Lovely ~ and colorful!

    Happy Day to you,
    A ShutterBug Explores

  10. These parades always catch my eye.

  11. Nice parade, William, I like those red jackets.

  12. @DJan: it's always been a summer thing for the Guards. Mind you, they stay at one of the university residences over the summer, which might explain why it needs to end by the end of August.

    @Jan: it certainly is.

    @RedPat: especially hearing the music.

    @Carol: thank you!

    @Red: mine too.

    @Karl: they look quite sharp in uniform.

  13. This looks so much like the ceremony in London!

  14. I like watching ceremonies like this.

  15. Every morning! Wow, I suppose someone who lives/work there would be used to it. It would be neat to see!

  16. Such fantastic photo opportunities with all those snappy uniforms and instruments.

  17. Great to see.
    Love the colour of their uniform.

    All the best Jan

  18. Parades are always fun to see and photograph!

  19. Very impressive, and nicely photographed!

  20. @Sharon: a lot of the tradition comes from Britain.

    @Marie: so do I.

    @Marleen: it's quite something to see.

    @Jenn: I've often come across it when in the area that time of morning, particularly on a Saturday.

    @Revrunner: I have noticed that a fair number of onlookers do tend to photograph along the route, or on the Hill during the ceremony.

    @Jan: you can't miss that uniform.

    @Bill: and they're so orderly about it.

    @Spare Parts: thank you!

  21. I'll echo: you've got to love those British red uniforms!

  22. Eveyrbody loves a parade, and those uniforms are terrific!

  23. I always think things like this are impressive. You don't see them that much here1

  24. Wasn't it too warm for hats like these that day?

  25. @Catalyst: we've held onto some good traditions from the British days. This is one of them.

    @Kate: they certainly are.

    @Jeanie: it's quite a tradition.

    @Beth: yes, a lot in the style of military march tunes.

    @Klara: on a humid day, I can imagine they're unbearable. On less humid days, I think they're manageable.