Press briefing on Independence Events – November 18, 2021. (PMO)

This year’s Independence Day Parade will have the usual “pomp and pageantry’.

Chief of Staff of the Barbados Defence Force (BDF), Commodore Errington Ricardo Shurland, stated this during a press conference this evening at Ilaro Court, and highlighted different aspects of the ceremony, which will take place on Monday, November 29.

Commodore Shurland shared that the military ceremony would be fused with a cultural extravaganza, which will begin at 8:00 p.m.

“The military ceremony will commence at around 10 minutes past 11, with the arrival of the various dignitaries that would normally obtain on Independence Day Parade, which will include the Chief Justice; the Prime Minister; … the only living National Hero that we have in Barbados, the Right Excellent Sir Garfield Sobers, and His Royal Highness Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales.

“His Royal Highness will be accorded a royal salute and a march pass and a final salute as a signal of our departure from the monarchy. That will be followed by the marching off of the old colour, which will be replaced by a new colour, as a consequence of Barbados becoming a republic,” he stated.

Commodore Shurland noted that the old colours, which represent Barbados’ bond and allegiance to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, will be replaced by new colours, which will be consecrated at the National Service of Thanksgiving on Sunday, November 28. 

He said those colours being blessed at the service will include the Presidential Colour; the Barbados Regiment Colour and the ensign of the Barbados Coast Guard.

Further highlighting the parade activities, the BDF Chief of Staff reported that after the final salute has been made to the monarchy, the arrival of Barbados’ President Elect, Dame Sandra Mason will be treated with some fanfare.


Also included in the ceremony will be an address by His Royal Highness, after which he will be conferred with an Honorary Order of Freedom of Barbados.  Following that, there will be the installation of the President Elect who will deliver an address. 

Given the COVID-19 environment, this year’s Independence Parade will have a smaller number of representation by units on parade. However, in spite of the small numbers, the Chief of Staff said the usual March Pass will occur and a salute will be accorded to the President.

“All the flags and banners from the unarmed units will be there. Of course, we will have the Barbados Defence Force; the Royal Barbados Police Force; the Girl Guides, [and] the Scouts. The only unit that I’m advised that is not able to participate this year would be the Church Lads Brigade.

“But recognising the kind of contribution that nurses would have made, I think it is very, very important that we have them as part of the parade. So, Barbadians, you can expect that pomp, you can expect that pageantry, … [and] it will all conclude with a fireworks display,” Commodore Shurland revealed as part of the ceremonial activities to mark Independence Day and Barbados becoming a republic.

The Independence Parade will be streamed live on television and the Chief of Staff encouraged Barbadians to watch “from the comfort of their homes”.

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