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Prince William to judge readiness of Irish Guards

09 June 2017

On Saturday June 10th Prince William will judge the readiness of his Regiment, the Irish Guards, to Troop their Colour in front of his grandmother HM The Queen on Her official birthday on June 17th.

This is the first time he has had this duty since becoming Royal Colonel Irish Guards in 2011. He will take the Colonel's Review on Saturday 10th June on Horse Guards Parade riding his trusted mount Wellesley in front of an audience of 6,000 guests.

Captain Jimmy Parke, Irish Guards is stationed at the Cavalry Barracks in Hounslow, west London. He said: "As a battalion, this is the first time we've trooped the Colour in front of Her Majesty since 2009.

"This is a really proud moment for the Irish Guards, especially to be able to have our Royal Colonel, Prince William, on parade as well." He added that key to the preparations will be the Irish Guards' faithful mascot Domhnall, a four-year-old Irish wolfhound, who will lead out the parade. The canine mascot is unique to the Irish Guards, with each one named after ancient kings of Ireland.

Also looking forward to the big day is Captain Freddy Simpson.  "This will be our first Queen's Birthday Parade with HRH the Duke of Cambridge as our Royal Colonel," he said. "We are honoured that he has granted us this privilege and that he chose to marry in our uniform.  HRH the Duchess of Cambridge has been kind enough to present a shamrock to the regiment at our St Patrick's Day parade over the last few years.  This weekend before the Queen's Birthday Parade we will conduct a full dress rehearsal, The Colonel’s Review, on Horse Guards Parade, at which HRH the Duke will inspect us to ensure we are ready to go."


Captain Simpson said the final display would be the culmination of a long and intense period of preparation, with the men spending long days on the parade grounds in London and Pirbright.

He added: "Also going on in the background is the enormous effort of ensuring that each soldier has an immaculate and well-fitting uniform; every man polishes his own boots to a mirror shine, but the tailors are the unsung heroes, working night and day in the run-up to the parade."

The Trooping the Colour ceremony originates from when regiments would carry their 'Colour' into battle as a rallying point for the soldiers. The Colour was 'trooped' - or protected - so that the soldiers would recognise it on the battlefield. To this day the ceremony has huge symbolism, with the Colour seen as representing the soul and ethos of the regiment.

The Irish Guards were formed on April 1, 1900 by order of Queen Victoria to recognise the bravery shown by Irish men in the Boer War in particular, and service in the British Army in general.

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