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Trooping the Colour
London SW1A 2AX
TfL Fare Zone 1
Each year, the official birthday of the Sovereign is marked by a spectacular military parade and march-past, known as Trooping the Colour. This colourful event takes place in June at Horse Guards Parade, Whitehall.
Trooping of the Colour is a must see spectacle for the majority of summer visitors to London. The splendidly turned out members of the Household Division (Foot Guards and Household Cavalry) in full dress uniforms march in perfect unison down the Mall. Trotting and jingling, follow the Cavalry in gleaming breastplates and plumed helmets on exquisitely groomed horses.
Trooping the Colour takes place on the second Saturday in June each year on Horse Guards Parade. Over 1,400 officers and men take part in the parade, along with over 200 horses. There are over 400 musicians from ten bands and corps of drums.
Due to the numbers of spectators to this event, to get reasonable views, visitors should arrive at least two to three hours before the ceremony commences. The Royal website recommends: Members of the public wishing to watch are advised to stand on The Mall or on the edge of St James's Park overlooking Horse Guards from 9:00 (their view may be somewhat obscured by troops in this position).
Events start at 10:00
- The Queen leaves Buckingham Palace at 10:40 travelling along the Mall in a royal carriage.
- The troops are formed up on Horse Guards Parade by 11:00. Precisely as the clock on the Horse Guards Building strikes eleven, the Royal Procession arrives at Horse Guards Parade.
- The Queen takes the Royal salute and inspects the troops.
- The massed bands perform a musical 'troop'.
- The escorted Regimental Colour is carried down the ranks.
The Foot Guards and the Household Cavalry then march past Her Majesty, and The King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery, rank past.
The Queen rides in a carriage back to Buckingham Palace at the head of her Guards, before taking the salute at the Palace from a dais. The troops then return to barracks. Her Majesty then joins other members of the Royal Family on the palace balcony for a fly-past by the Royal Air Force at 13:00 hours.
Colonel's Review
For those visitors who will not be in London for the Trooping the Colour, a rehearsal (known as The Colonel's Review) usually takes place a week before the actual Birthday Parade.
Contact & Further Information
No tickets are required for those who are prepared to line the parade route
Tickets are required for the monarch’s inspection at Horse Guards Parade
Applications should be made in the January or February prior to the event to:
Brigade Major, HQ Household Division, Horse Guards, Whitehall London SW1A 2AX
Tickets for the seated stands around Horse Guards Parade are allocated by ballot in March and successful applicants are notified and asked for payment.
To give yourself a chance to obtain these much sort after tickets, enclose an International Reply Paid coupon for the return of your notification. To obtain details of these coupons, refer to the web site of your local postal authority and type the phrase ‘International Reply Paid coupons’ in that web site’s search box. Non-British postage stamps are not valid in the UK and not accepted as part of this purchase.
Getting There
To find the best way for getting to Horse Guards Parade, visit TfL Journey Planner.
- By Underground
Westminster Station District, Circle and Jubilee Lines
Charing Cross Station Bakerloo and Northern Lines
Charing Cross Station
Use the Trafalgar Square exit
- By Bus
Bus Routes – 3, 11, 12, 24, 53, 77A, 88 and 159
- By Open Top Tour Bus
Do not forget that Visitors can use their ‘Open Top’ tour bus ticket to travel to 10 Downing Street, Horse Guards, The Banqueting House and the Houses of Parliament precinct (Houses of Parliament and Big Ben).
- By Walking
There is an easy walk from either Trafalgar Square or Westminster over well marked even pavements.
Google Maps - Horse Guards Parade

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