Buckingham Palace, London

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  • balhannah's Profile Photo

    THE HORSE GUARDS

    by balhannah Updated Sep 7, 2012

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    Still at Buckingham Palace, and the Foot Guards have marched into the Palace grounds. The crowd around mostly rush over to the Palace gates to see the changing of the guard, so I moved to the front of the roped off area. Lucky I did, as it wasn't long before the Horse guards came along, and I had a front view!
    We just watched them go past as many of the people did, then the crowd started to disperse and move away.

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    CHANGING OF THE GUARD @ BUCKINGHAM PALACE

    by balhannah Written Sep 7, 2012

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    Here they come!
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    Changing of the Guard or Guard Mounting is the process involving a new guard exchanging duty with the old guard.
    First of all, you need to know what day and what time, so click onto the listed website.

    Next, What time to get there for a good position?
    We were there half hour before, and already the crowd was thick. I asked a Bobby for a good position, and he told me roadside of the Palace gates, this is where we went. I was lucky, as there were short people in the front, so I could see over the top of them.
    If you are standing there, then the guards will come to your right, and march around to the left and into the Palace Gates.

    The handover is accompanied by a Guards band which plays all styles of music. I was rather surprised! You may hear traditional military marches to songs from films and musicals and familiar pop songs.

    When The Queen is in residence, there are four sentries at the front of the building. When she is away there are two.

    The Queen's Guard usually consists of Foot Guards in their full-dress uniform of red tunics and bearskins. If they have operational commitments, other infantry units take part instead.

    At Buckingham Palace, Guard Mounting takes place at 11.30 am.
    It is held daily from May to July, and on alternate dates throughout the rest of the year.

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    BUCKINGHAM PALACE

    by balhannah Written Sep 7, 2012

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    Buckingham Palace
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    Does anybody come to London and not come and see Buckingham Palace? I wonder!

    As it happened we came here twice, and walked past several times. I should have timed my visit a week later, as the Palace was open for Public Tours then.

    How much do you know about Buckingham Palace?
    I guess that it's the official London residence and principal workplace of the British monarch, and also where state occasions are held.
    It hasn't always been known as Buckingham Palace, it was originally known as Buckingham House, a large Townhouse built for the Duke of Buckingham in 1705. George III in 1761, used it as a private residence for Queen Charlotte, then it was known as "The Queen's House".
    During the 19th century it was enlarged, finally becoming the official royal Palace of the British monarch on the accession of Queen Victoria in 1837.
    I didn't know the palace Chapel was destroyed by a German bomb in World War II, and this is where the Queen's Gallery was built and is now open to the public displaying works of art from the Royal Collection.
    The East front is where the Royal family traditionally congregates to greet crowds outside.......
    The Buckingham Palace Garden is the largest private garden in London.

    The state rooms, used for official and state entertaining, are open to the public each year for most of August and September, as part of the Palace's Summer Opening.
    Please check the website for opening times.

    This year [2012], there is a special exhibition Diamonds: A Jubilee Celebration

    ADMISSION IN 2012....[INCLUDING AUDIO TOUR]
    Adult £18.00
    Over 60/ Student (with valid ID) £16.50
    Under 17 £10.25
    Under 5 Free
    Family £47.00 (2 adults and 3 under 17s)

    NO PHOTO'S ALLOWED IN THE PALACE

    Photo's allowed in the garden

    Allow 2-2.5hours to see everything

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  • breughel's Profile Photo

    Change of Guards at Wellington Barracks.

    by breughel Updated Jun 23, 2012

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    The new guard at Wellington Barracks.
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    You can see the Change of Guards at Buckingham Palace through the railings, surrounded and pushed by a huge crowd. Not really comfortable!
    You can also go on the left of Buckingham Palace to the Wellington Barracks on Birdcage Walk where the New Guard is formed starting at 10.45 am.

    On the left side of the parade ground of Wellington Barracks, the new guard, thirty men plus the lance corporals and sergeants, are facing the public standing behind the railing. Not so crowded here. One can see the details and take photos under good conditions.
    On the right side stands in circle the band of the Guards with about thirty musicians.
    They play during the inspection of the guardsmen.
    It is a colourful parade with the scarlet tunics, bearskin caps, the brass of the music instruments and the typical British drill and shouting orders.
    The easiest way to recognize the various Guard regiments is by their plume on the bearskin cap (now made of synthetic fiber): white for the Grenadiers, red for the Coldstream, blue for the Irish (Prince William is colonel of the Irish Guards since 10 Feb. 2011), white and green for the Welsh and no plume for the Scots.

    The new guard is formed in two sections; the regimental flag is handed to the youngest officer of the Guard.
    At 11.30 am the band and the new guard leave the Wellington Barracks by the gate on the right. They march toward Queens Victoria Monument and Buckingham Palace. From here on the crowd is getting quite important.

    After the ceremony it is also interesting to stay at the Wellington Barracks to see the "old guard" coming back from the Palace, but I did not stay for this part.

    There is no Guard Mounting in very wet weather.

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  • breughel's Profile Photo

    Who is on guard?

    by breughel Updated Jun 16, 2012

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    Irish Guards at Wellington Barracks.
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    The guard duties are normally provided by a battalion of the Household Division and occasionally by other infantry battalions or other units.
    As you might know the Household Division is made up of seven Regiments:
    The Household Cavalry Regiment.
    The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals; they wear a metal helmet.
    The five regiments of foot: Grenadier Guards, Coldstream Guards, Scots Guards, Irish Guards and Welsh Guards. They wear the bearskin cap (is now made of synthetic fiber).

    To know who is on guard on the day of your visit, look at the following website www.changing-the-guard.com , at "Guard Mount Schedule" where you will find what battalion is on guard on a specific day.
    If you want to see the scarlet tunics and bearskin caps choice a foot guard regiment. During my last visit there was an alternation between the Irish Guards and the Blues and Royals. I choose the day with the Irish Guards with the band of the Grenadier Guards.
    The Irish Guards wear a bleu plume on their bearskin cap.

    June 2012 second half, every day: Coldstream Guards and Scots Guards alternate.

    There is no Guard Mounting in very wet weather.

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  • adema29's Profile Photo

    Buckingham Palace-A must see

    by adema29 Updated Dec 21, 2011

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    Buckingham Palace 1
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    I've been there so many years ago, when everything was "great", "beautiful", "amazing"... and this was all I could say unfortunately :(
    I remember that I've been spending long minutes in front of that building trying to understand why it is so "special".
    Probably now I can say that the History behind its walls, together with the walls itself are giving that special atmosphere of "being special".
    The nice neo-classical creation (only a part of it) of John Nash is probably the best way of showing the power of the former Britannic Empire to the rest of the World.
    Actually, Nash was dismissed as he has lost somehow the control over the budget, trying to make something really extravagant.
    The Palace itself seems to be a real art gallery and I'm still waiting for the day when one of the queens-kings will invite me inside for coffee and a closer look :)

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  • StevenHampshire's Profile Photo

    Visiting Buckingham Palace

    by StevenHampshire Written Dec 20, 2011

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    No trip to London is complete without visiting Buckingham Palace, the ultra-luxurious residence of the British monarchy. Even for those who live in the UK, it's worth visiting this awe-inspiring palace at least once - if only to see for yourself what it really looks like to live in the lap of luxury!

    While many compare Buckingham Palace to similar palaces in Paris and Istanbul, it really is unique in its own right, both architecturally and in terms of its distinct British history. From its vast meeting halls and foyers, replete with chandeliers and expansive mirrors, to its perfectly manicured gardens, Buckingham Palace really is the cream of the crop when it comes to London sightseeing!

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    Buckingham Palace and the royal mews

    by Stentorian Written Dec 2, 2011

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    Buckingham Palace is one of the most beautiful architectural works of the world. If you are travelling to London, don't miss these master piece. You can watch the change of royal guards behind the fence which takes place at 11:00. Visit to the royal mews will cost you some pounds. I took an online pass which includes entrance to the royal mews and the Tower of London, and that costs 16 pounds.

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    Visit the Royal Mews

    by Herkbert Written Sep 19, 2011

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    Royal Carriage I
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    Our walk through the Royal mews was really interesting. It is essentially the stables, but you'll also get a chance to see many of the Royal carriages and a couple vehicles - we were even lucky enough to see a couple horses.

    The Brits are all about pomp and pageantry and you'll get a taste of it here. Great way to go out for a Sunday ride.

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    Visit the home of Royalty

    by Herkbert Updated Sep 19, 2011

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    Sue at Buckingham Palace
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    Buckingham Palace is another one of those must see locations when visiting London. As home to the royal family, the palace is actually the residence of the Queen. Tours are available, but not when the family is in residence.

    We were lucky enough to have tickets to tour the Palace, the Royal Mews and visit the Queen's Gallery plus see the exhibit from the Royal wedding which included Kate's dress (beautiful), her earrings (lovely), and also see the wedding cake. The staterooms are very tastefully decorated - ornate, but not over the top. The artwork in the gallery were exquisite, and I'm sure that there are many more pieces that were not on display.

    Exiting through the rear of the palace we had a chance to walk through the gardens on the way out. Spacious, lush and beautiful.

    If you can get there, do try to visit the palace. It was interesting and beautiful.

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    Thorough inspection of the New Guard.

    by breughel Updated Sep 17, 2011

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    Inspection of the new guard at Wellington Barracks
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    At 10.45 am starts on the parade ground of Wellington Barracks the formation of the new guard and the inspection of the Guardsmen.
    This was done by a little man; as he wore a normal cap, not a bearskin cap, he looked smaller than the Irish Guards. He was dressed with a dark blue coat, had a sword and spurs at his boots. So that he looked quite different from any guardsmen on the parade ground but he clearly was the chief inspector of all the parade.
    During more than half an hour he inspected each button on the scarlet tunics, checked if the white belts were fitted tightly, if the shoes were clean, the correct position of the riffle at the shoulder. He inspected all ranks: guardsmen, sergeants and even the two officers. A sergeant major was following him writing his remarks on a notebook!

    Among the tourists standing behind the railing of Wellington barracks a number has been in the army like me; we all had the same thought, how could he find defects on Guardsmen who are an example of military perfection?

    At the end of the parade I asked a guardsman at the entry of the barracks who was that man. I was answered the "adjutant" what surprised me because this rank, highest of NCOs, is used in France or Belgium but not to my knowledge in the UK where the equivalent is "Warrant Officer". So I will have to return to learn who was that perfectionist inspecting the mounting Irish Guards.

    After some search on the web I found that Guards Battalions have officers called "adjutants". The one which intrigued me was a Captain, Adjutant 1st Battalion Irish Guards.
    There is also a Colonel, Regimental Adjutant and, last but not least, Prince William is the Irish Guards' first royal colonel (since Feb. 2011) and its Colonel-in-Chief is the Queen.

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    Queen of England

    by walterwu Updated Sep 15, 2011

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    Buckingham Palace after the rainfall
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    Buckingham Palace has served as the official London residence of Britain's sovereigns since 1837 and today is the administrative headquarters of the Monarch.

    Getting to Buckingham Palace involves walking through Green Park or from St. James Parks Station.

    On the day, it rained on-and-off and because there aren't any shelter along the way, we had to sort refuge under a big tree with an umbrella. The sky cleared and we were able to carry on. It may be a good thing though as the queue and number of visitors disappeared during the rain and after the rain, the visitors number hasn't build up yet.

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  • Donna_in_India's Profile Photo

    The Queen's Home

    by Donna_in_India Updated Jun 3, 2011

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    Buckingham Palace
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    Buckingham Palace has been the main London home of the Royals since 1837. It was originally built for the Duke of Buckingham. The large statue in front of the palace (outside the gates) is the Queen Victoria Memorial which was built in 1901 and glorifies the achievements of the British Empire.

    The outside of the Palace is really unimpressive - not an interesting building at all, although the gold gates were very ornate. Although the Palace is open to the public for a few weeks in the summer, it was not open while we were there. The State Rooms that are open include the Dining Room, Music Room, White Drawing Room, and Throne Room. From the photos I have seen, the inside looks spectacular. I am sure that the inside more accurately reflects the Royal's wealth and lifestyle than the outside and I'm sorry I wasn't able to see that.

    We didn’t see the changing of the guard either (I've seen it before), but did see a few of the famous guards in their guardhouses inside the palace gates. The changing of the guards takes place on alternate mornings at 11:30 a.m., and daily in May, June, and July. Get there early for a good viewing spot!!

    A visit to Buckingham Palace is a must see when in London!

    Hours:

    23 July - 3 October 2011 09:45-18:30 (last admission 15:45)

    Admission is by timed ticket with entry every 15 minutes throughout the day. Tickets are valid only on the date and at the entrance time specified on the ticket. Regrettably, late-comers cannot be admitted. A visit lasts between 2 and 2½ hours.

    Admission prices:

    The State Rooms, Buckingham Palace
    (includes audio guide)

    Adult £17.50
    Over 60/ Student (with valid ID) £16.00
    Under 17 £10.00
    Under 5 Free
    Family £46.00 (2 adults and 3 under 17s)


    A Royal Day Out
    (This ticket gives admission to three sites: The State Rooms, the Royal Mews and The Queen's Gallery, Buckingham Palace)
    (only available23 July - 3 October 2011)

    Adult £31.00
    Over 60/ Student (with valid ID) £28.25
    Under 17 £17.50
    Family £81.50 (2 adults and 3 under 17s)

    Ticket Sales and Information Office:

    The Official Residences of The Queen
    London SW1A 1AA
    Telephone (+44) (0)20 7766 7300
    Fax (+44) (0)20 7930 9625
    E-mail bookinginfo@royalcollection.org.uk

    Changing the Guard

    Changing the Guard takes place at 11:30 daily from May until the end of July and on alternate days for the rest of the year, weather permitting.

    Provisional Schedule for 2011 (please note that this schedule is set by the British Army and is subject to change. Please check this site prior to a visit)

    March - odd numbered dates (1, 3, 5, etc)
    April - even numbered dates (2, 4, 6, etc)
    May - daily, except 28 May
    June - daily, except 4 June
    July - daily

    The new guards arrive at the forecourt of the Palace at 11:30 from Wellington Barracks. The journey takes about 5 minutes and the soldiers are accompanied by a band. The ceremony is conducted on the Palace forecourt and takes approximately forty minutes to complete.

    The Queen's Guard
    The Queen's Guard changes 11:30am in the forecourt at Buckingham Palace. At Windsor Castle the ceremony usually takes place in the Castle's quadrangle at 11:30am. In summer the ceremony takes place every day. In winter it takes place every other day.

    Please note that all visitor information is correct as of this update.

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    Royal Meeting

    by akosilei Updated Apr 28, 2011

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    Visiting Buckingham Palace is I guess always been a top of everyone's list from London visitors like us. It is the London home and primary residence of the British monarch. Located in the City of Westminster, the palace is a setting for state occasions and royal hospitality. It has been a focus for the British people at times of national rejoicing and crisis.

    It was Easter time and we were told that the Queen was in residence and the palace is open only during summer. The changing of the guard happens at 11:30, May through August. The frequency is reduced to alternate days from September to April. The time, according to some, varies, needless to say we also miss the guards hahaha...

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  • rexvaughan's Profile Photo

    Visit the Queen's house

    by rexvaughan Written Apr 27, 2011

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    The West Terrace
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    Buckingham Palace is probably one of the most famous royal residences in the world and well worth a visit. As you would guess, photos are not allowed in the palace and verbal descriptions cannot do it justice but walking up the Grand Saircase and throughthe Portrait Gallery and the State Dining Room and seeing the Blue, Green and White Dining Rooms is an experience of a lifetime for an old Anglophile like me. It was also refreshing and fun to have a pastry and coffee afterward in the Garden Café on the West Terrace overlooking the lawn and lake. The exit after the tour is a lovely pathway through the palace gardens leading out to the real world.
    The palace is open only for about 2 months a year while the monarch is not present (July 23-October 3, 2011) and is well peopled with visitors, so planning ahead is essential. I recommend buying tickets on-line. They are timed tickets so you must be prompt.
    There are combination offers which include the Royal Mews and/or The Queen’s Gallery. We bought the Royal Mews which is also timed but much more relaxed about the timing.
    One of the things I found amusing on the website was the sentence, “By asking us to treat your purchase as a donation, you enable us to claim gift aid tax relief on your payment. ” Who knew the Queen has to pay taxes!

    For prices, more detailed information and booking tickets, they have a good website:
    http://www.royalcollection.org.uk/default.asp?

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