Last week soldiers from The Band and Bugles of The Rifles passed a meticulous Colonel Commandant’s inspection at their base location in Worthy Down, Hampshire. This was to establish whether they had reached the required standard of turnout and drill to conduct ceremonial duties throughout 2021.
The Riflemen, who are based in Worthy Down, Hampshire have been learning and rehearsing the series of complex musical ensembles and drill movements since the beginning of the year. This enabled them to deliver a confident and disciplined parade demonstrating to the inspecting party that they were indeed fit for the role of undertaking ceremonial duties.
The Band and Bugles have been training for their annual Sounding of the Retreat performance, the performance that they’ll be giving at public displays for the rest of the year.
The Colonel Commandant is the most senior Rifleman, and therefore his approval of the music, how it’s played and the overall routine is required prior to any civic events.
The inspection gives him the opportunity to review the display in its entirety before providing any feedback to the Band’s Director of Music and the Bugle Major. Any critique is taken on board for final polishing and perfecting prior to their first public appearance of the year.
The Bugle is central to Rifles tradition and as such it is a special honour for the Bugler to sound the Royal Salute - Rifles ‘sound’ rather than ‘play’ or ‘beat’ the various calls reflecting their history as light troops.