Friday, 24 July 2009

Ceremony of the Keys

This evening after a lovely dinner at Pizza on the Park (thanks for the recommendation Lois), Chris and I went into what I call the center of London to the Tower. After getting some fun photos of Tower Bridge and the Tower of London, we walked by the Thames. At 9:30 we got to see the Ceremony of the Keys which is the official locking up of the Tower of London. It's a ceremony that has happened every night without fail since 1280! There was once in I believe the 1940s when a bomb hit inside the Tower that the ceremony was delayed 7 minutes because they had to locate the keys in the ruble from the blast! The Yeoman Warder told us a bit about the ceremony and what was going to happen and then at 7 minutes to 10 it started. There were armed guards from Her Majesty's army and they locked the gates. . . with us inside! Turns out that there is a door in the gate that stays open until the Yeoman Warders curfew (midnight) and then they're locked in and no one gets out until the morning. This would be why there's a doctor that lives in the Tower of London as well as a Chaplin. I can't remember how many Yeoman Warders and their families live in the Tower full time. I think that would be a claustrophobic's nightmare, being trapped inside a fortress LOL! It was soooooo cool!

We weren't able to take pictures of the actual ceremony but here are the pictures I have from before and after the ceremony itself.


  1. The Tower of London was one of my favorite places to visit. It's such a neat place to see. I didn't get to see that ceremony - it sounds pretty cool! I'm glad to hear you had yes another fun day!!!

  2. Juliane, I smiled the whole time I was listening to your video clip with the directions on how to get through the gate. At 6'4" Dave would have had to do a deep duck and step. Great to hear your laugh also!!!!
    Kathy :-)

  3. THIS SOUNDS SO COOOOL! I wish I knew about this! I'm glad you got to experience it :) I saw the picture from this and they were great!
    I love you!