Changing the Guard

The Changing the Guard ceremony, which famously takes place at Buckingham Palace, will have changes made to its schedule from this month.

From 16th January, the ceremony will be held on the same days each week, for a trial period of three months.

Changing the Guard normally takes place daily between April and July and on alternate dates between August and March.

Groups will now be able to see the procedure on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, rather than alternate days.

The changes come as part of tightened security measures as a way of making it easier and safer for tourists to plan ahead to see the spectacle.

The three-month trial will see the Changing the Guard ceremony take place slightly earlier each day, at 11am.

A spokesman for The Royal Parks said: “This new programme allows the public, visitors, motorists and businesses to forward plan following new road closures on Guard Change days which were introduced in December as part of ongoing security measures aimed at keeping the public safe.”

History of Changing the Guard

The privilege of guarding Buckingham Palace traditionally belongs to the Household Troops, better known as ‘the Guards’, who have carried out this duty since 1660. It’s also periodically extended to other regiments of the British Army.

The Guards consist of five infantry regiments – the Grenadier, Coldstream, Scots, Irish and Welsh Guards – and two regiments of the Household Cavalry – the Life Guards and Blues and Royals.

During the Changing the Guard ceremony, also known as ‘Guard Mounting’, one regiment takes over from another.

The Queen’s Guard consists of the St James’s Palace and Buckingham Palace detachments.

And then to the palace…

Groups who’d like the full Buckingham Palace experience can follow a Changing the Guard ceremony with a tour of the palace itself.

Group rates are available for parties of 15 or more, and self-led guided tours can be undertaken with the multimedia guides available with admission.

For further information visit