Taking son to Cenotaph on Sunday - what to do?

Discussion in 'The NAAFI Bar' started by trickywoo56, Nov 10, 2005.

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  1. I'm determined to take my 6 yr old son to the Cenotaph this Sunday - especially after he explained that he wears a poppy at school because of a really, really big wall :D

    Question - I've looked at the RBL website and a couple of others for advice and there isn't anything of any real use. Where's the best place to go to to see anything at all? Is it still possible?

    If any Arrser's fancy a pint after the hip flask's run out we'll be up for it. Always need a drink afterward wherever I am.

  2. It's a long time since I was there as a Met PC, like nearly 25 years, but my memories are of large crowds. If you want to get anywhere with any kind of view worth seeing you will need to be there pretty darned early, like 3 hours early. Why not give Cannon Row nick a call, someone there should be able to give you better advice. Usually best to be on the oppostite side of Whitehall to Downing Street. It is quite an experience though. When the big gun goes off in Hyde Park to mark the start of the two minutes silence it just goes so quiet. The first time I was there I was quite shocked by the utter quiet, not a sound, not traffic, just nothing. An emotional experience indeed. The latter parts after the main ceremony, when old soldiers march past, when widows march past, is moving indeed but is never shown on TV.
    Just one thing though, the length of time you'll be stood there would be a hell of a trial for a 6 year old, especially if the weather is none too clever - and you might not be able to get him to the front where he can see anything. if you go, I hope you find it as emotionally stimulating and uplifting as I did.
  3. Thanks for your reply, Adrian.

    The age issue has been mentioned by family and my cavalier "He'll stand and be fine" attitude has been roundly corrected. The RBL plan shows the parade going straight through to Whitehall from Horseguards so watching from Traf is out. For some odd reason I always imagined they come down from Admiralty Arch! Perhaps a visit to the War Museum on a quiet day would be more in order but I'll give C. Row a call.

    Thanks again,

  4. My advice is to avoid the Parliament Square end of Whitehall, move towards the middle down past the Slim and Montgomery statues, keep going and you'll still see the parade and the veterans. This is also easier for the facilities/ public tpt. at the T. Square end if you've the little 'un with you.

    Remembrance Day crowds are usually polite and easy to move through, and the pubs although busy aren't a complete nightmare (avoid the ones by Charing X) my advice actually is to walk across Horseguards, make a left and try some of the small ones out behind Cockpit Steps/ Petty France/ St. James' Park. Failing that the Red Lion is a famous boozer and not too bad.

    I've seen the Gurkhas do a little ceremony near their memorial by the Old Scotland Yard (head down Whitehall towards T. Square, make a right past, I think, Richmond House and it's down there on the left), it's always very dignified and very moving. I don't know if they're doing it this year. Your son might also like the big Golden Eagle of the RAF fighter command memorial down by the river (it faces out to the channel, with it's arse pointing at the Air Ministry), and there is a new RAF/ Battle of Britain statue that he'll probably like too.

    If you want to treat junior "The Texas Embassy" up on T.Square isn't particularly cheap but the kids will love the grub. It also isn't McDonalds.

    Enjoy, it's always a good day.

  5. They closed it I'm afraid, try ringing Charing Cross nick instead.

  6. I could be wrong but you may mean the DEFRA building.

    Can't miss the Old Scotland Yard building, its now home to police horses.
  7. No, DEFRA is in Horseferry Road, opposite Thames House.
  8. Not that dim to mix up Horseferry Rd with Whitehall :D

    I last walked past it two weeks back on the way to Traf Sq - could have sworn the initials were on the plaque on the front. They moved from the place they were just behind as it shut down few years ago.
  9. DEFRA (HQ) has always been Horseferry Rd / Smith square... there might be another office at Whitehall
  10. As a Defra employee, I can answer this one (though it's a bit late for the original purpose). The Defra ministerial building is Nobel House in Smith Square. Nearby there is Ergon House on Horseferry Road, Cromwell House on Dean Stanley Street, Page Street on, well, Page Street (behind Thames House), and the top floors of 9 Millbank. The Whitehall area buildings are 3-8 Whitehall Place (roughly parallel with Horseguards Road, with the Police Stables on Old Scotland yard behind), plus 55 Whitehall. We used to have 10 Whitehall Place, adjacent to the MoD Metropole Building, but this has been vacated. For the real geeks, we also have space in Ashdown House on Victoria Street, and a building on Woburn Place.

    So you can now all sleep easily...