Saturday, December 8, 2018

In The Senate Chamber

Here we have another view of the stairs leading to the outside, accessible by Parliamentary personnel. The stained glass window you see is a recent one; it features both Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth in its colours. The portrait of King George III appears at left.

The tour went into the Senate. Canadian senators are appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister. Their appointment is by region, and the number of senators is less than a third of  the MPs in the Commons- just over a hundred at present. It is stipulated as a chamber of sober second thought. 

The walls feature large war art paintings, on permanent loan from the Canadian War Museum. As the current Centre Block was built in the wake of the First World War, that conflict resonates through the architectural design of the building, making it more somber than its predecessor. Note the difference, for instance, with the Library of Parliament as I showed it to you. The war art, depicting battle fields and the lives of soldiers, is a reminder of the costs of war.

Speeches from the Throne are done here at the beginning of a new session, with the Governor General handling the entire affair. The MPs come over from the House of Commons to attend; the wall between the Senate and the lobby area can be removed so as to allow for the Commons to come in and bear witness.

Looking up gives us this view of the ceiling.

I looked back up at the balcony and photographed some of the woodwork.

One more look at the Senate Chamber. In January the Senate will be meeting in the Government Conference Centre for the duration of the work on Centre Block. I am hoping at some point to get in. I have been inside it during the Doors Open weekends some years ago, and it is quite an impressive building inside.

Coming back out, I paused in the lobby area between the Senate and the foyer to photograph this bust.


  1. Beautiful ceiling designs. Can't help but be somber in this place.

  2. What an impressive building. The British Houses of Parliament are apparently in dire need of some renovation and restoration work.

  3. It looks very British, so different to our "modern" place, but I reckon the speeches are very much the same. "sober second thought" is open to interpretation...
    Beautiful woodwork and ceiling. Also the reminders, that we would need here,too!

  4. Hello William!
    A very beautiful and impressive building! Great architecture too!
    Wonderful pictures of the ceiling and the Senate Chamber !
    Thank you for sharing! Have a lovely weekend!

  5. Hello, Wow, the paintings and ceiling are lovely. Beautiful building. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

  6. I enjoyed this review of the red chamber.

  7. WOW! Amazing architecture and enjoyed seeing the paintings.

  8. A magnificent place. Thank you for sharing it.

  9. @Nancy: true.

    @Lady Fi: definitely.

    @John: buildings like this do need to be taken care of.

    @Iris: most senators here are responsible. The odd one gives the others a bad name. There's one of them by the name of Duffy.

    @Dimi: you're welcome.

    @Eileen: thank you.

    @Anvilcloud: I enjoyed showing it.

    @Tom: definitely.

    @Betty: I agree.

    @DJan: you're welcome.

  10. No expense was spared in building the senate chamber.

  11. Incredibly beautiful details again William, the wood carving is stunning the artwork fabulous!

  12. That's what I'd call a proper government building. Very regal.

  13. Stunning and great capture of the light ^_^

    Happy Day to you,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  14. Such an impressive building. The ceiling and paintings are absoutely beautiful.
    Thank you, William!

  15. Once again I love the carvings! The senate works well most of the time when it isn't too partisan.

  16. Remarkable woodcarvings and art works.

  17. @Red: certainly not.

    @Grace: it is!

    @Sharon: indeed!

    @Carol: thanks!

    @Bill: I agree.

    @Red: true.

    @Italiafinlandia: that they are.

  18. This is such an impressive chamber and that woodwork is spectacular. I love how they have the paintings on display.

  19. It's a very impressive building, I enjoyed your photographs.

    All the best Jan

  20. More spectacular woodwork! Gorgeous!

  21. wow, love the ceiling ... the wood work is awesome! ( ;

  22. That's a very impressive Senate Chamber, the woord carvings and the paintings are wonderful once again.

  23. Sehr schön die Bilder vom Senatssaal mit den aufwendigen Holzarbeiten.


  24. War art is quite interesting, especially the old stuff, as you know they weren't there.

  25. @Jeanie: I love that too.

    @Francisco: thank you.

    @Jan: thanks!

    @Kay: I agree.

    @Beth: it is!

    @Marie: definitely!

    @Jan: I agree with you.

    @Noke: thanks!

    @Klara: indeed!

    @Jennifer: true.