A year after The London Regiment, London’s Army Reserve, was redesignated the 1st Battalion London Guards, the Battalion received its new set of Colours in a sacred ceremony at Buckingham Palace yesterday (Sunday, 9 July 2023).
The Colours (Ceremonial Regimental flags) were presented by The Colonel 1st Battalion London Guards, HRH Prince Edward, the Duke of Edinburgh.
The new Colours replace those of The London Regiment, which were presented in 1997.
The traditional ceremony which is based on the format of religious services held on the battlefield for centuries, where soldiers are blessed from a makeshift altar of drums in a hollow square before going into battle, was attended by 100 soldiers from the reservist unit. They were led by their Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Chris Sykes, and music was provided by The Band of the Irish Guards.
The new Colours were consecrated by the Chaplain General of His Majesty’s Land Forces: The Reverend Michael Parker, attended by Staff Chaplain, Father Ian Rogers, and the Chaplain 1st Battalion London Guards, Father Richard Terrado-Reardon.
The Colours were originally carried into the thick of battle so that soldiers could see where the rest of their regiment was at all times. They are incredibly important to every soldier who serves under them as they represent the spirt of the regiment and it is believed that they carry the essence of all those soldiers who have died since the regiment’s formation, serving the Colours.
Following the consecration, the colours were formally handed to the Battalion by His Royal Highness Prince Edward, Duke of Edinburgh, who then took the salute as they were marched past with the Battalion.