Over the centuries, each new population that has settled in The Bahamas, with their different backgrounds, traditions and beliefs, has shaped Bahamian culture into the unique, colourful patchwork of life and lifestyles that it is today.
The Islands of The Bahamas gained independence from Great Britain on 10 July 1973, which is celebrated as Bahamian Independence Day. As a member of the British Commonwealth, The Bahamas has a symbolic link to Great Britain, with an appointed Governor-General representing the Queen of England, and as an example of the continued British influence on Bahamian government, who continues observance of the historical Changing of the Guards. There is much pomp and ceremony, as the Royal Bahamas Police Force Band performs. The ceremony takes place at Government House (the office and residence of the Governor-General) in Nassau every two weeks.