When the guys are getting ready for CastleTrek, they are rather busy with their day jobs! Below is a quick rundown of some of the public and ceremonial duties carried out by the Household Cavalry.
Public Duties and State Ceremonial
A key defence output and one of the Army’s Standing Tasks, Public Duties and State Ceremonial form part of ‘the fabric of the nation’. For a country with global interests, these roles offer a powerful symbol of our operational military heritage, whilst enhancing the standing of the Sovereign and the Nation before both national and international audiences.
HCMR’s key Public Duties and State Ceremonial outputs:
The Queen’s Life Guard: In early times the Guard was as much as 100 strong and provided Escorts to accompany the Sovereign wherever he or she travelled by road. It now consists of either a Long Guard or a Short Guard on duty at Horse Guards, with a daily changing ceremony at 11 o’clock (10 o’clock on Sundays), on Horse Guards Parade.
Long Guard: When The Queen is in London, the Guard consists of 1 Officer, 1 Corporal Major (who carries the Standard), 2 Non-Commissioned Officers, 1 Trumpeter and 10 Troopers. This is known as a Long Guard.
Short Guard: When Her Majesty is not resident in London, the Guard is reduced to 2 Non-Commissioned Officers and 10 Troopers.
The Queen’s Birthday Parade: The highlight of the Ceremonial Season, and televised across the world, HCMR provides four mounted divisions to escort the Sovereign and perform a March Past.
The Garter Ceremony at Windsor Castle: The regiment is in the dismounted role, lining the route to Windsor Castle’s chapel for the investiture of new members to the Order.
Investitures: Around 25 times a year, Household Cavalrymen provide staircase parties as individuals are presented awards and honours by Her Majesty the Queen, the Prince of Wales or the Princess Royal.
The State Opening of Parliament: A historic occasion, each year the Sovereign drives in State to Westminster for the State Opening of Parliament, escorted by four mounted divisions (over 100 men) of HCMR.
State Visits: Formal visits to the UK by Heads of State from overseas have the aim of strengthening Britain’s relationships with other countries. There are normally four visits annually that would typically see the Sovereign and visiting Head of State escorted by four mounted divisions (over 100 men). These could take place in London, Windsor or Edinburgh.
Remembrance Sunday at the Cenotaph: A dismounted division from HCMR represents the Regiment to commemorate Remembrance Day, the anniversary of the end of WWI in 1918, at 1100hrs, The national ceremony is held at the Cenotaph on Whitehall, London.
The Lord Mayor’s Show: A mounted division (25 men) deploy as part of the procession.
The Major General’s Inspection: The whole Regiment is mounted for an annual inspection by the GOC LONDIST in Hyde Park prior to the beginning of the main Ceremonial season.