On August 3rd, 1914, Hamilton Gault of Montreal offered to Canada to raise and equip a battalion for overseas service. On the 6th of August the Government accepted the offer, and the daughter of the Governor General of the time, Princess Patricia, agreed to lend her name to this about-to-form group of men largely of previous service. The Charter of the Regiment was signed on the 10th of August and recruiting began rapidly, being finished in eight days at Ottawa. Thus began a proud and splendid story of service to Canada.
Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry celebrated its 100th Anniversary in 2014. As one of Canada’s most renowned infantry regiments, several major events were held to celebrate the 100th Anniversary, with activities in Edmonton, Ottawa and Frezenberg, Belgium. Throughout these celebrations and commemorations, the PPCLI will aim was to bring members of the Regiment past and present together, and as a national regiment many events were open to the public, thereby connecting the Regiment with Canadians.
The Pipes and Drums of the Edmonton Police Service has a unique history that dates back to the First World War when members of the Police Service joined the fledgling PPCLI to pipe troops into battle and to pipe them home again. Members of the initial Band served as stretcher bearers during this time of conflict. As a result of this association the Pipes and Drums of the EPS is the only non-military civilian band within the Commonwealth to proudly wear the badges of three Canadian Military Regiments, the PPCLI, the Loyal Edmonton Regiment and the Canadian Airborne Regiment.
The Pipes and Drums participated in the 100th Anniversary Commemorations in Edmonton in August 2014, in Ottawa in September 2014 and traveled to France and Belgium in May of 2015.
On May 8, 2015, exactly 100 years after its first great battle of the First World War, approximately 150 soldiers from the 2nd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (2 PPCLI) commemorated a century of PPCLI service to Canada by: re-dedicating a refurbished memorial to the Battle of Frezenberg; conducting a Freedom of the City Parade in Ypres; and participating in a service at Menin Gate in Belgium. The Pipes and Drums of the Edmonton Police Service were honored to accompany the PPCLI to all of these events plus many other locations in Belguim and France.
The first two photos below were taken in Edmonton in August and the remainder in Ottawa in September 2014 during the Sunset Ceremony at Parliament Hill, Freedom of the City, and at the War Memorial.