March Past at Horse Guards Postcard

We come to the final postcard in our little series covering some of the ceremonial life of London this week with a view of a march past at Horse Guards:

The men on parade are from the Coldstream Guards, as witnessed by the red plumes on their bearskins. the style of equipment worn with a pack and folded greatcoat together with the length of their rifles all suggests that this image dates to the Edwardian era:

The men are followed by their officer on horesback:

Looming over the parade ground is the main Horse Guards building with its central clock tower:

The clock is sited in the turret above the main archway; it has two faces, one facing Whitehall and the other, Horse Guards Parade, each dial being 7 feet 5 inches in diameter. It strikes the quarter-hours on two bells. Originally made by Thwaites in 1756, the clock was rebuilt in 1815–16 by Benjamin Lewis Vulliamy, the clockmaker to King George III. Prior to the completion of the clock of Big Ben in 1859, the Horse Guards Clock was the main public clock in Westminster. A dark stain above the Roman number two on the clock face is supposed to mark the time of the execution of King Charles I in 1649, which took place in the roadway outside Horse Guards. The annual ceremony of Trooping the Colour commences when the Horse Guards Clock strikes eleven.

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