Facts & Figures
Who We Are
The Band of The Household Cavalry is comprised of musicians from The Royal Corps of Army Music and is one of 14 Regular Army Bands in the British Army. The band was formed in September 2014 by the union of The Band of The Life Guards with The Band of The Blues and Royals, the two mounted bands of the British Army.
With over sixty musicians, the band is now the largest Regular military band in the UK.
Based in Windsor, its main tasks include Changing of the Guard at Windsor Castle and performing for The Queen’s Birthday Parade.
State Trumpeters can be seen performing at high profile events including Royal weddings, the State Opening of Parliament and the Festival of Remembrance at The Royal Albert Hall.
Musicians are drawn from all ranks of The Band of The Household Cavalry. They have all joined The Royal Corps of Army Music and attended riding school before being selected for the role. They all have to memorise up to 22 different fanfares.
Both Household Cavalry uniforms are worn on parade however, when Senior Royalty are present, the band wear the distinctive State Dress which consists of the world famous Gold Coat and blue jockey caps. State Dress is the oldest continually worn uniform in the British Army; purchased by The Lord Mayor of London for the restoration of King Charles II 1660.
Want to join us?
The Royal Corps of Army Music can offer full time employment as a musician within the British Army. A pensionable career potentially to the age of 60. Fantastic travel opportunities with the chance to perform at great venues and events around the world.
The Royal Corps of Army Music is interested in your performance and potential rather than just music qualifications.
Not all musicians have recognised musical qualifications so you may be able to join us based on merit at audition. If you have the required skills or can demonstrate you have the potential we are looking for, we can help maximise your musical development. Interested? Please get in touch here.
We have a pivotal role in sounding Reveille during the Festival of Rememberance at the Royal Albert Hall, which has been the highlight of my career LCoH Sandford
LANCE CORPORAL OF HORSE SANDFORD - TRUMPET/HARP
Lance Corporal of Horse (LCoH) Kate Sandford started playing cornet from an early age. She studied Creative Music Technology at The University of Huddersfield. During her time in Yorkshire, she studied cornet under Philip McCann and enjoyed the challenges of competing at brass band contests, with Carlton Main Frickley Colliery Band.
LCoH Kate Sandford was recruited into British Army Music as a trumpeter in 2012. Over the past 8 years, she has progressed as a dual instrumentalist on trumpet and harp and has been privileged to perform at many high profile commemorative events, such as The Festival of Remembrance, Passchendaele 100 and most recently for the BBC broadcast, VJ Day.
LCoH Sandford identifies, “a unique aspect attributed to The Band of The Household Cavalry is the State Trumpet team. The team provide musical support for events attended by the Royal Family and The Lord Mayor of London. This includes events such as diplomatic receptions at Buckingham Palace and visits from Heads of State at the Guildhall." LCoH Sandford serves alongside her husband in The Band of The Household Cavalry and both performed together at The Royal Wedding as part of the State Trumpet team.
In 2019, LCoH Sandford was selected to provide musical support to the coalition forces in Kabul, Afghanistan as part of a brass quintet over the Christmas period. The quintet travelled between coalition bases performing at carol services and providing broader musical outputs as part of troop morale support.
With the immense, spine-tingling sound of tens of thousands of people cheering behind us, it's certainly an experience I will never forget. LCoH Brown
Lance Corporal of Horse Brown - Percussion
Lance Corporal of Horse (LCoH) Richard Brown is a percussionist in The Band of The Household Cavalry and Bandmaster of Chalk Farm Salvation Army Band.
LCoH Brown has been a member of The Salvation Army from a young age and received his early musical tuition in Middlesborough, gaining experience as a percussionist in the Tees Valley Youth Orchestra.
Since joining the British Army in 2003 and moving to London, LCoH Brown has attended The Salvation Army at Chalk Farm and been a member of the band. He was appointed Bandmaster in 2016 after spending a number of years as Deputy Bandmaster.
It was LCoH Brown’s childhood dream to ride a drum horse and, despite breaking his ankle during riding school, he has achieved that dream. In 2017 he presented a new drum horse to Her Majesty The Queen and was able to have a personal conversation with her from on top of his horse!
LCoH Brown's career highlights include touring Australia, New Zealand, America, Canada, Italy and Denmark. He also took part in the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations; performing on stage with Robbie Williams at the Jubilee concert, and the Jubilee procession at Buckingham Palace. He said, “With the immense, spine-tingling sound of tens of thousands of people cheering behind us, it's certainly an experience I will never forget.”
During his 17 year career, he has also served with the Band of the Irish Guards and the Band of the Grenadier Guards. LCoH Brown particularly enjoys taking part in State Ceremonial events, such as the Queen's Birthday Parade. He said, “It was what enticed me to do the job, and every so often I have to pinch myself at the amazing opportunities I have had so far in my career.”
Past to Present
The history of The Life Guards began in 1659 at the court of the exiled King Charles II in Holland when a number of royalist gentlemen led by Lord Gerrard of Brandon formed themselves into the King’s Life Guard. From the outset, music held an important role in regimental life – it is recorded that as early as 1660 the regiment was preceded by its own mounted kettledrummer and four trumpeters.
Blues and Royals
The Royal Horse Guards (Blues) formed in 1661 from members of the disbanded cavalry of Cromwell’s New Model Army and became known as ‘The Oxford Blues’, in reference to their first Colonel, the Earl of Oxford, and to their blue tunics. From its formation, the Regiment had kettledrummers and trumpeters, as did the Royal Dragoons (1st Dragoons) who were also raised in 1661 as The Tangier Horse to guard the North African town gifted to the crown.
Blues and Royals
In 1805 King George III personally presented a pair of solid-silver Kettledrums to the Royal Horse Guards as ‘testimony to their honorable and military conduct on all occasions’. These kettledrums continue to be used today and are carried by the Drum Horse on the Queen’s Birthday Parade.
By 1822 the Regiment had a band of twenty including nine trumpeters, hautbois (oboes) and French horns. In 1831 King William IV presented both the 1st and 2nd Life Guards with a pair of silver kettledrums which are still in use today and form an iconic part of The Queen's Birthday Parade.
Blues and Royals
In 1969 the Royal Horse Guards (Blues) amalgamated with the 1st Royal Dragoons (The Royals) to become the Blues and Royals (RHG/D).
The Band of The Household Cavalry is formed by the union of the two bands.
Meet Musician Robinson-Plain
British Army Music is recruiting right now. For more information about joining the British Army as a musician, get in touch with the Corps Engagement Team.