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Learn about London
by Mandy Barrow

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Project Britain
About London
London Index
Getting to London
Facts about London
The Queen's Guards
Royal London
Buildings and landmarks
The People
London Transport
Essential information
Shops and Markets
What to see
(important street)
Annual Events
London Police
Food and Drink
Open Spaces
Districts / Areas
History of London
River Thames
Hidden London
Arm Chair Travel
British life and culture - England, Scotland and Wales
Horse Guards

Nearest Tube: St James's Park

Horse Guards Arch is the official main entrance to both St James's Palace and Buckingham Palace.

image Horse Guards
The entrance of Horse Guards Arch at Whitehall

The Queen's Household Cavalry is the mounted guard at the entrance to Horse Guards Arch. The mounted sentries (who change every hour) are on duty each day from 10am until 4pm, at which time there is a dismounted parade of the Guard.

The Life Guards (in red) and the Blues and Royals (in blue) have been guarding the gateway since Tudor times.

Mounted Sentries
Life gaurd on the left and Blues & Royal on the right

Horse Guards is the best place to get up close to the guards. There are two dismounted sentries on duty until the gates are shut at 8pm, when only one sentry is left on guard until 7am when the second sentry returns on duty.

image: mounted guardimage: guard

Walk through Horse Guards arches to Horse Guards Parade

image: Horse Guards Arch
Back of Horse Guards Arch

Horse Guards Parade is a large parade ground. It was formerly the site of the Palace of Whitehall's tilt yard, where tournaments were held in the time of Henry VIII, between knights in armour. Today it is the scene of the annual celebrations of the Monarch's official birthday - Trooping of the Colour.

image: Horse Guards Parade

Changing of the Guard at Horse Guard Parade, Whitehall

At Horse Guards Arch, Changing of the Guard takes place daily at 11.00 am (10.00 am on Sundays) and lasts about half an hour; it is normally held on Horse Guards Parade by the arch of Horse Guards Building at Whitehall.

The Household Cavalry

The guard is formed from the two regiments that comprise the Household Cavalry, they are the LifeGuards, originally the bodyguard to Charles I, and the Blues and Royals, formed from a regiment serving Oliver Cromwell.

The Life Guards
The LifeGuards wear white plumes on their helmets and red tunics

The Blues and Royals
The Blues and Royals wear red plumes and blue uniforms.

Royal Guards in London

The guards who guard the Queen and the Royal Palaces are all part of the Household Division.

The Household Division is made up of seven regiments of the British Army:

Where next?

Go through the parade ground at the back of Horse Guards.
Turn right to the Mall, here you can walk down to Buckingham Palace

OR continue down Whitehall (see map below). Hover over and click on the labels on the map.

image: Map of Whitehall Click to go to Horse Guards Click to find out about Trafalgar Square Click to find out about the Houses of Paliament and Big Ben 10 Downing Street Click for Cabinet Office Click for Banqueting House HM Revenue Foreign and Commonwealth

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All the materials on these pages are free for homework and classroom use only. You may not redistribute, sell or place the content of this page on any other website or blog without written permission from the Mandy Barrow.

© Copyright Mandy Barrow 2013

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Mandy is the creator of the Woodlands Resources section of the Woodlands Junior website. 
The two websites and are the new homes for the Woodlands Resources.

Mandy left Woodlands in 2003 to work in Kent schools as an ICT Consulatant. 
She now teaches computers at The Granville School and St. John's Primary School in Sevenoaks Kent.

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