The annual pageantry and splendour of the Queen’s Official Birthday Parade or Trooping The Colour took place Saturday 11 June 2016. Trooping the Colour Marks the official birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and is believed to have first been performed during the reign of Charles II. In 1748 it was decided that the parade would be used to mark the official birthday of the Sovereign and it has been an annual event since 1760.
The event was attended by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, who left Buckingham Palace at 10.45am and rode down the Mall in the Ascot Landau drawn by a pair of matching grey horses From Buckingham Palace, through Admiralty Arch and onto Horseguards Parade. The Sovereign’s Escort, consisted of troops of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment and the Mounted Bands, The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery, The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals, accompanied by the Massed Bands of the Household Cavalry
Prince Charles Prince of Wales, took part as colonel of the Welsh Guards and Colonel in Chief to many other Regiments as did Princess Anne the Princess Royal who is Colonel of the Blues and Royals. Prince William Duke of Cambridge is Colonel of the Irish Guards, And was also on horseback for the ceremony. Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, and Prince Harry meanwhile arrived in a coach behind the queen. Prince Andrew, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie also rode from Buckingham Palace in a carriage. Prince Edward and Sophie Countess of Wessex, PrinceGeorge and Princess Charlotte
The Welsh Guards were joined by the Royal Household Cavalry, Coldstream Guards, Scots Guards, Grenadier Guards, Irish Guards, Royal Life Guards, Blues and Royals, Welsh guards led by lieutenant Giles Harris, The mounted Kings Troop led by Major Craig Hallett. Others who took part in the parade included Colour Sergeant Charles Hancock, the Major of the Parade was Major Tom Parsons and the Regiment Sergeant wasMajor Paul Dunn. Other dignitaries in attendance included Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife Samantha Cameron.
During the occasion The Massed bands play many tunes including The National Anthem, The Welshman, Les Hugenots”, which has been played since 1871, the Quick march “Canatex”, British Grenadiers Slow March, Hazelmere, the Grand March from Rienzi by Wagner, Men of Harlech, Scipio by Handel, Figaro, The Champion, Highland Laddie and Voice of the Guns. March of the British Grenadiers, Escort to the Colour, Welsh Guards Slow March Coldstream Guards slow March, Lord Wellington’s March,Toc-H by Joseph Mansfeild, Grenadier guards Quick march, Scots Guards Quick March, Coldstream Guard quick march, Precious Glory by Gottfried Piefke, Men of Wales by Archie Ellis and Men of Harlech.
After the Trooping of the Colour the royal party made their way back through Admiralty Arch, up The Mall and back to Buckingham Palace. On her return to Buckingham Palace The Queen took the salute as the Guards Divisions marched past. The Changing of the Guard ceremony then took place with the new guard being formed by the men of the Escort to the Colour. This was followed shortly afterwards by four generations of the Royal Family including Prince George who was making one of his first Royal Appearances appearing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace to witness the flypast
The Fly-past by the Royal Airforce, Included the Red Arrows, Merlin, Puma, Augusta 109 and Chinook Support Helicopters, the Douglas Dakota from the Battle of Britain Memorial flight, the Avro Lancaster, flanked by 2 Spitfire Mk9 from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, a c130 Hercules, C 17 Globemaster, flanked by two Eurofighter Typhoons and three Tornado GR3s
After the Flypast, The Kings Troop Royal Horse Artillery fired a 41-gun salute in Green Park. (21 gun salute to mark the Queen’s Bofficial birthday and another 20 gun salute because it takes place in a Royal park.) The event was observed by Prince Harry. Prince Andrew, Prince Edward, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie. The Prime Minster David Cameron and his wife Sam Cameron and the Deputy Prime Minister also attended among other dignitaries. In total there were more than 200 horses on parade, and more than 400 musicians from all the Household Division Bands & Corps of Drums and The famous Drum Horses of the Mounted Bands.