Ex-guardsmen given preview of colourful royal ceremony

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The Guardsmen’s Club from Eastbourne enjoyed attending the final rehearsal of The Trooping the Colour in the run-up to the Queen’s official birthday.

Last month the group were at Horse Guards Parade in London on Saturday June 8 for the ceremony. The parade was taken by H.R.H Prince Charles as Colonel of the Welsh Guards whose Troop it is this year.

Each year the Trooping the Colour is for the Queen’s official birthday, this year it was on Saturday June 15. Her Majesty is the Colonel-in-Chief of all guards regiments.

Alan Cooper from the Guardsmen’s Club said, “ We had a party of about 40 people all from the five guards regiments at this second and final rehearsal.

“We sat under the Admiralty and had an excellent view of the parade. It was a very hot day, good, perhaps for the spectators but not so good for the bearskinned guardsmen.

“Having taken part in no less than 18 Troops in my 18 years service in the Coldstream Guards band I found it easier and more comfortable sitting in the stands than marching up and down on Horse Guards Parade. But always a great occasion which the Brits always excel.”

The following day on Sunday June 9 at the Glastonbury Hotel in Eastbourne, where the group meet on a monthly basis, the club’s new president Ron Perrin was announced at the Queen’s birthday lunch - the club always hold its June meeting as close to the Queen’s official birthday as possible. The group enjoyed tucking into a cake courtesy of the hotel afterwards, which was cut by Mr Perrin.

Mr Perrin who lives in Hailsham served in the Welsh Guards at the end of WWII and was until being made president, the secretary/treasurer of the club for 41 years and an original member when the club was formed in 1972.

Each year congratulations are sent to Her Majesty from the club and a reply is sent from Her Majesty in time to be read out at the birthday lunch, in which, Her Majesty sends her thanks on her birthday and sends best wishes to all the members of the club.

The club is open to all former members of the five foot guard regiments, Grenadier, Coldstream, Scots, Irish and Welsh Guards, plus the two regiments of the Household Cavalry, the Life Guards and the Blues & Royals. All seven regiments are members of the Royal Household, and in the history of the Grenadiers and Coldstream go back to the 1600s.

The club meets for a meeting and lunch once a month from February to October and in December for a Christmas lunch at the Glastonbury Hotel.

For more information about the club contact Mr Cooper on: 449004.