Saturday, 11 June 2011

Trooping the Colour



Today is the "Official" Birthday of Her Majesty the Queen. Which is not to say it is her actual birthday which is on the 21st of April

The "Official" birthday of the Monarch is celebrated on the 1st 2nd or sometimes the 3rd Saturday on June ever since Edward VII decided he would like a bit better weather for his special day.



Of course being British we couldn't let the day go without some Pomp and Ceremony and as such it is the day of the Queens Birthday Parade, also known as Trooping the Colour.

Although very much a ceremonial event it does have practical origins. Back in the day of poor communications the rallying point on the field of battle for each regiment would be around its flag, or "colours" To ensure each soldier knew his own regiments colours, during parade each day the flag would be "trooped" in front of them. The colours would also be trooped before and after a battle to show to the Regiment that the Ensign was in tact, along with their honour.


Things have changed somewhat since then and most military leaders see the benefit of being a little less conspicuous, wearing a bright red tunic in a wide open sandy environment is perhaps not the brightest of things to do ! It reminds me of a classic Far Side cartoon image...



But I digress, the Trooping of the colour is an elaborate event, full of all those traditions and history we as Brits do so well. Its worth remembering as well that the army doesn't have troops that just do the ceremonial duties, these guys have probably recently been or a due to rotate onto active service. The video I came up with gives a pretty good insight into the event ...







8 comments:

mybabyjohn said...

Fabulous to watch but I do feel sorry for those men standing there in the heat. The old girl herself holds up well doesn't she? We Canadians are very proud of OUR Queen.

Better is Possible said...

I got some good learning from your post! Long live the Queen! We're looking forward to William and Kate's visit later this month. Thanks again for an informative post!

Raejean said...

I've always like that Far Side cartoon. My husband even had it on a T shirt.

Duncan D. Horne said...

Fantastic! Didn't realise it was today! The Royal Wedding followed by the trooping the colour; just great. Thanks!

Duncan In Kuantan

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Quite an event - have you seen in live in person?

RJR said...

Thanks for the comments, no Alex I haven't seen it live but I have walked across Horseguard's (the sandy square it is held on) its seems a lot smaller in life than on the videos!

Duckie. said...

What you don't see is all the practising for those complicated movements and all the spit and polishing for the big day, never been on a parade that big, but it's the same spit and polish for them all.
But "Nobody does it better" I feel a song coming on!.

Darlene said...

Very interesting post. It's amazing how every little move must be done exactly right. thanks for sharing the video.

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