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1st Battalion Welsh Guards

Operations & Training

The Welsh Guards have been on operations all around the world with tours to Afghanistan and Iraq being the most recent.
The wide range of activities undertaken by the Welsh Guards reflects the busy and varied nature of the modern day British Army.

A Guardsman who has served with the Battalion will have seen a varied career with multiple deployments. The Battalion has deployed on operational tours for almost all conflicts since 1945 including the Falkland Islands, Northern Ireland, Iraq, Bosnia, Kosovo and Afghanistan. This has all been interspersed with fire fighting, sport, adventurous training and state ceremonial and public duties demonstrating the busy nature of a career in the Welsh Guards.

The most recent operational tours were in 2009 as part of 19 Light Brigade and 2012 as part of 12 Mechanized Brigade both based in Helmand Province, southern Afghanistan.
The Battalion has also undertaken and supported multiple training exercises across the UK and the world. In recent years this has seen the Welsh Guards go to the Falkland Islands, Norfolk, Brecon, Scotland, Kenya and Belize. On the horizon for the Battalion are exercises to Kenya, Slovenia and Salisbury Plain before being in a state of readiness to deploy anywhere in the world at short notice.

welsh guards


As a Foot Guards Regiment in the Household Division, the Welsh Guards are proud to provide the guard for Her Majesty the Queen at her royal residences.

When carrying out this duty the Battalion mounts from Wellington Barracks in central London, although it is currently based in Elizabeth Barracks, Pirbright.

When in its ceremonial role, the Battalion provides the Guards at St James's and Buckingham Palaces, Windsor Castle and the Tower of London. Other ceremonial tasks and parades include Trooping the Colour and Guards of Honour for visiting heads of state.

Those on parade wear the famous red tunic and bearskin, or Greatcoats in the winter, whilst carrying out all their duties.

One way to distinguish between the regiments of the Foot Guards is the spacing of the buttons on the tunic. The Welsh Guards wear their buttons in groups of five and have white and green plumes on their bearskins.

The Battalion was proudly involved in the Royal Wedding in April 2011 of HRH Prince William and Kate Middleton providing the Royal Guard of Honour at Buckingham Palace with the remainder of the Battalion street lining the processional route on Horse Guards. The Battalion has also been involved in numerous State Visits and provided Guards of Honour for visiting delegations, the funeral of Baroness Margaret Thatcher, leading the Trooping of the Colour in both 2013 and 2015 after being presented New Colours in April of that year.

The Battalion are never restricted to just ceremonial duties, as the duties are shared between at least one other Battalion allocated to ceremonial duties. In order to keep the Battalion fit and current on their military skills, it is normal for the Battalion to deploy on overseas exercises and operational tours whilst posted to London.

welsh guards ceremonial

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