Manitoba's Uncommon Sites and Sights
Spotlight #6

2 PPCLI (The Second Battalion, Princess Patricia Canadian Light Infantry)

"Freedom of the City" parade in Winnipeg in May of 2004

                  For the following images, can anyone provide information on :


  • the different uniforms (red, old, etc.) ?
  • the parts of the uniforms (weapons, fur, patches, etc.) ?
  • the medals (campaigns, etc.) ?
  • the names of some of the soldiers/bands/dignitaries ?
  • who/what is the 1st battalion PPCLI ?
  • the other questions posted below.

    Please send your contributions to

    Your comments will appear at the bottom of this page
    under 'Viewers' Comments" or beside the image.

    Some of the information below was submitted by Petra Smith -- Lieutenant (Navy) Public Affairs Officer -- 1 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group.

    Other information came from Cpl WC Gomm of the Canadian Forces.

    Image #1 -- Meanings of patches
    1. (triangular patch) Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group

    2. (blue rectangular patch) Presidential Unit Citation for 2 PPCLI's Battle of Kapyong

    Image #2 -- Soldiers at attention

    Image #3 -- Honour Guard (?)


    This is the Colour Party -- The red sashes are worn by infantry sergeants and warrant officers. In the Napoleonic Days, officers were identified because they were on horse back. The red sashes allowed the soldiers and officers to identify the subordinate officers.

    Image #4 -- Soldiers in red (what year?)


    The Second Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry Drum Line

    Image #5 -- Guard (?) at attention -- significance of ax?


    The soldier carrying the ax is part of the Second Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry pioneers. The ax represents the quasi-engineering role that the pioneers assume.

    Image #6a -- Old uniforms viewed from the front (What years/campaigns?)

    Image #6b -- Old uniforms viewed from the back (What years/campaigns?)

    Question 6a and 6b - these are not PPCLI uniforms, they are Royal Winnipeg Rifles uniforms. They date back to 1883, the year the regiment was raised. The guys on the side with slightly different uniforms and the big axes are pioneers, not skirmishers, and the rest is the Regimental Band of the RWR. -- For information regarding pioneers & skirmishes, see 'Viewers' Comments' below.

    Image #7 -- Uniforms from different branches (?)

    From right: Navy Uniform (white hat), Army Uniform (green uniform) and Air Force Uniform (blue)

    Image #8 -- Medals (years/campaigns/honours)

    See Viewers' Comments

    Image #9 -- The presentation of the picture -- Where will it hang? -- Who is the artist?

    Image #10a -- The City of Winnipeg Police Band -- At what events does it perform?

    Image 10b -- The City of Winnipeg Police Band -- significance/use of fur on one drummer?

    Image 11 -- At the corner of Portage & Main (Winnipeg's famous intersection) with the 'Bank of Montreal' building (constructed 1913) in the background.

    Viewers' Comments

    Image 8: -- From right: red and white medal: Canadian Forces Decoration for 12 years of service. The Canadian Forces Decoration is awarded to officers and Non-Commissioned Members of the Canadian Forces who have completed twelve years of service. The decoration is awarded to all ranks, who have a good record of conduct. The decoration is awarded to the regular forces, reserve forces, officers of the Cadet Instructors Cadre (CIC), Canadian Rangers and holders of honorary appointments in the CF. Service in the regular and reserve or auxiliary forces of the British Commonwealth of Nations will be counted towards the medal if the final five years have been served with the Canadian Forces and no other long service, good conduct or efficiency medal has been awarded for the same service. The medal may be awarded to persons in possession of any long service, good conduct or efficiency decoration or medal clasps, provided that the individual has completed the full qualifying periods of service for each award and that no service qualifying towards one award is permitted to count towards any other. The service need not be continuous. This award supersedes all other long service awards for members joining the Canadian Forces after 01 September 1939. blue and white medal: for military service in the Former Yugoslavia. On 14 December 1995 North Atlantic Council launched the largest military operation ever undertaken by the Alliance, Operation Joint Endeavour. Based on UN Security Council Resolution 1031, NATO was given the mandate to implement the military aspects of the Peace Agreement. A NATO-led multinational force, called the Implementation Force (IFOR), started its mission on 20 December 1995. IFOR was given a one-year mandate. After the peaceful conduct of the September 1996 elections, IFOR successfully completed its mission of implementing the military annexes of the General Framework Agreement for Peace. However, it was clear that much remained to be accomplished on the civil side and that the political environment would continue to be potentially unstable and insecure. On 25-26 September, one week after the Bosnian elections NATO Defence Ministers concluded that the Alliance needed to re-assess how it might continue to provide support for the establishment of a secure environment after the end of IFOR's mandate in December. The role of IFOR (Operation Joint Endeavour) was to implement the peace. The role of SFOR (Operation Joint Guard / Operation Joint Forge) is to stabilise the peace. The difference between the tasks of IFOR and SFOR is reflected in their names. 12 December 1996, SFOR was authorised to implement the military aspects of the Peace Agreement as the legal successor to IFOR. Like IFOR, SFOR operates under Chapter VII of the UN Charter (peace enforcement). Awarded for thirty days continuous or accumulated service on the land, at sea or in the air spaces of the Former Yugoslavia, Albania, the Former Republic of Macedonia, and the Adriatic Sea (the theatre of operations); or Ninety days continuous or accumulated service, in the territories of Italy, Greece, Hungary and Austria, in direct support of the NATO operations in the Former Yugoslavia (the adjacent area). green, red, white and blue medal: The Canadian Peacekeeping Service Medal. The prestigious Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to all United Nations Peacekeepers in 1988 in recognition of their collective efforts in the cause of peace. This inspired the creation of the Canadian Peacekeeping Service Medal (CPSM) to acknowledge the unique contribution to peace that Canadian peacekeepers have made since 1947.Awarded for a minimum of 30 days cumulative service in a UN or international peacekeeping mission. red, white and black: Special Service Medal. The Special Service Medal (SSM) was created to recognize members of the Canadian Forces who are taking part in activities and operations under exceptional circumstances. The Special Service Medal (SSM) recognizes members of the Canadian Forces (CF) who have performed a service determined to be under exceptional circumstances, in a clearly defined locality for a specified duration. The SSM recognizes approved activities underway on 11 June 1984 or subsequently established. This medals is always issued with a bar that specifies the special service being recognized, each bar having its own criteria. yellow and blue medal: the Order of Military Merit. The Order of Military Merit was established to provide a worthy means of recognizing conspicuous merit and exceptional service by members of the Canadian Forces, both Regular and Reserve. Appointment to the level of Officer is made for outstanding meritorious service in duties of responsibility.

    Images 6(a) & 6(b): -- Additional information regarding is as follows:
    The history of the pioneer goes back to Roman times and they were originally civilian engineers within the military machine. As soldiers were clean shaven, the pioneers were allowed to grow beards. Pioneers have carried through over the years and have just been recently removed from the Canadian Forces order of battle. But they are still used for parades and other formalities. Skirmishers are part of the Royal Winnipeg Rifles and were used to clear the line of attack for the main body of soldiers. They were the first soldiers into battle.

    The PPCLI is a regiment within the regiment. There are 3 battalions 1 PPCLI (Edmonton), 2 PPCLI (now Shilo), 3 PPCLI (Edmonton) and Regimental Headquaters (Edmonton)