Honouring Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth shares a laugh with then-premier Ernie Eves during her visit to Toronto in 2002 at Exhibition Place. RENE JOHNSTON / TORONTO STAR FILE PHOTO

Our deepest condolences to the Royal Family on the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. She has touched many lives and leaves a lasting legacy in Canada and here at Exhibition Place.  

Queen Elizabeth II has visited Canada more than any other country, and has graced the grounds at Exhibition Place four times over the past 71 years. 

Her Majesty first visited on October 13, 1951 as Princess Elizabeth with her husband Prince Philip, just a few years after their marriage. The Princess performed an inspection of the Royal Canadian Army Cadets at the Grandstand at Exhibition Stadium. 

On her next visit on June 29, 1959, Elizabeth, now Queen, visited the Exhibition Stadium a second time, this time for an inspection of the 48th Highlanders of Canada – the Queen’s own regiment.  The Royal couple visited Exhibition Stadium a third time in 1984 to celebrate the Province of Ontario’s Bicentennial (1784 – 1984).  

Her Majesty’s last and most recent visit was on October 9, 2002, as part of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Tour. The Royal couple toured the Festival of Ontario exhibit in the Direct Energy Centre (now Enercare Centre), where many of our staff had a chance to meet her. 

Although her many visits live on in memory, Queen Elizabeth has left a lasting mark at Exhibition Place in the Queen Elizabeth Building. Originally called the Women’s Building, it was renamed in the Queen’s honour upon opening in 1957.  

To celebrate, Exhibition Place acquired a portrait of the Queen to grace the new building’s halls.  The painting was created by portrait painter Denis Quentin Fildes around 1955 and now resides in the Exhibition Place Archives. Fildes was commissioned for numerous other royal portraits, including a full-length portrait of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip for the Royal Naval College at Greenwich in London.

These tributes to Queen Elizabeth II will live on here at Exhibition Place, and will remind staff and visitors alike of her long reign and lasting legacy. 

Look below to see some photos of The Royal Family and their visits to Exhibition Place.