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Ceremonial Events

Ceremonial duties are an important part of Army history and tradition, and all soldiers undertaking this role are highly trained who also play an important part in military operations worldwide. Ceremonial events take place throughout the country, and indeed the world, but few are as high profile as those that draw millions of tourists to London year after year.

Important Notice

04 Apr 17: Countess of Wessex Orchestra at 7.00pm in the Guard’s Chapel, Birdcage Walk, London SW1E 6HQ. Admission Free

12 Apr 17: Holy Week Recital at 6.30pm – 7.30pm in the Guard’s Chapel, Birdcage Walk, London SW1E 6HQ. Featuring members of the Guards’ Chapel Choir. Tickets from £15

13 Apr 17: 1.10pm Lunchtime Concert at 1.10pm in the Guard’s Chapel. Featuring Members of the Guards’ Chapel Choir. Admission Free

21 Apr 17: HM the Queen’s Birthday. Gun salutes at Hyde Park (12.00pm) and the Tower of London (1.00pm)

22 Apr 17: St. George’s Day Concert at The Guards Chapel: Band of the Coldstream Guards will perform their annual concert in aid of veterans charity Combat Stress. Concert will feature Alexander Armstrong, LPO Principal Trombonist Mark Templeton and the Commonwealth Children’s Choir

23 Apr 17: St. George’s Day

25 Apr 17: Anzac Day Service

  • At 05.00am Dawn Service at Australian War Memorial at Hyde Park Corner
  • At 11.00am Wreath Laying Ceremony and Parade at the Cenotaph. Complimentary tickets available from here
  • At 12.00pm Service of Commemmoration and Thanksgiving in Westminster Abbey. Complimentary Tickets available from here

25 Apr 17: At 1.10pm Guards Chapel Recital. Featuring Guards Flute Ensemble. Free admission


A summary of timings for the Changing the Guard ceremonies in London and Windsor.

The official birthday of the Sovereign is marked each year by a military parade and march-past, known as Trooping the Colour, which takes place each June on Horse Guards Parade, London.

On two successive evenings in June, London's Horse Guards Parade, resounds to the stirring sounds of the Massed Bands of the Household Division as they perform Beating Retreat.

The Household Cavalry and one of the Foot Guards Battalions provide a small contingent on the Sunday nearest to 11th November, the anniversary of the end of hostilities in the First World War.

State visits are formal visits to the UK by Heads of State from overseas, in which the Household Division plays a major ceremonial role.

Each year the Sovereign drives in State to Westminster for the State Opening of Parliament and is accompanied by various elements of Household Division.

The Queen's Guard and Queen's Life Guard are the names given to contingents of soldiers charged with guarding the official royal residences in London.

The Queen's Life Guard is provided by men of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment (HCMR) at Horse Guards.

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