In October 2010, the Pipes and Drums of the Edmonton Police Service traveled to Northern Ireland to close an important chapter in the history of the police service and to complete a story about immigration to Alberta. The band visited and performed in a number of towns and villages and traced the roots of thirty-five young men from in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. They all left the Royal Ulster Constabulary in November and December 1952 and traveled by ship across the Atlantic and then by rail to join the ranks of the Edmonton Police Force, as it was known then.
The pipe band performed at the Police Service of Northern Ireland headquarters in Belfast, then traveled and performed at other locations, to delighted audiences, throughout Northern Ireland. During the visit the pipe band enjoyed the hospitality, took the opportunity to view the countryside, visited many of the famous attractions and needless to say developed a liking for Guinness.
The photo at the top was taken in front of Dunluce Castle on the County Antrim coast (click to enlarge). The black and white photos below are from the ships that the RUC members were on when they emigrated to Canada in 1952. Click on any of the photos to enlarge.
To view the photos in the gallery below individually with a brief description, click on the photos and then “next >” to see the next photo etc. For a slide show with no text, click on “Show as slideshow” below.
Shortly after our trip the band graced the cover of the Police Service Gazette. Click on photos to enlarge.