Britain’s Military Tribute to The Queen on Her Diamond Jubilee
The UK Ministry of Defence has announced details of the ceremonial Military personnel who will play a key role in the Central Weekend celebrations for Her Majesty The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, in London 2-5 June.
Her Majesty The Queen and His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh both served in the Armed Forces during the Second World War, in the Auxiliary Territorial Service and the Royal Navy respectively. In addition to being Head of the Armed Forces, The Queen also holds various appointments and honorary ranks, as does The Duke of Edinburgh and other members of The Royal Family. Such appointments include special relationships with certain ships, honorary colonels (known as Royal Colonels) in Army regiments and Corps, and honorary ranks connected with Royal Air Force stations.
The military elements involved are:
SATURDAY 2 JUNE
The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery will perform the Coronation Day Gun Salute.
SUNDAY 3 JUNE
The Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant
Accompanying the Royal Barge containing Her Majesty The Queen and His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh will be several vessels of the Royal Navy. These will be two Royal Navy P2000 boats, two Royal Navy Picket Boats, two RIBs (Rigid Inflatable Boats) from HMS Diamond, and four ORCs (Off-shore Raiding Craft) from 539 Assault Squadron Royal Marines.
A Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines will follow the Royal section of the pageant in a separate vessel.
The Honourable Artillery Company will fire a Gun Salute for The Queen as the Royal Barge passes HM Tower of London.
TUESDAY 5 JUNE
Step Lining outside St Paul’s Cathedral for the Service of Thanksgiving
Personnel from all three Services will line the steps in to St Paul’s Cathedral for Her Majesty’s arrival and departure at the Service of Thanksgiving.
Military musicians inside St Paul’s Cathedral
The State Trumpeters of the Household Cavalry, the Band of the Welsh Guards, and the Royal Air Force Fanfare Trumpeters will perform at the Service of Thanksgiving.
The Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment (The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals) will provide a Sovereign’s Escort of nine Officers and 109 Other Ranks to Her Majesty The Queen for the Carriage Procession from New Palace Yard to Buckingham Palace.
The Mounted Band of the Household Cavalry will ride along the route ahead of the procession.
The processional route will be lined with more than 1,000 personnel and military musicians from all three Services. This will include Officers and Other Ranks from:
– Ships, Submarines, the Fleet Air Arm and land establishments of the Royal Navy;
– The Grenadier, Coldstream, Scots, Irish and Welsh Guards of the Household Division, and The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment from the Army; and Troops from The Queen’s Colour Squadron, 63 Squadron RAF Regiment from the Royal Air Force.
Bands in support of the Street Liners
Tri-Service bands will line the processional route alongside the Street Liners. These will be:
– A Band of the Royal Marines;
– The Bands of the Grenadier, Coldstream, Scots, Irish and Welsh Guards of the Household Division; and
– A Band of the Royal Air Force.
The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery will perform a Gun Salute from Horse Guards Parade to coincide with the carriage procession.
Guard of Honour and “Feu du Joie”
A Guard of Honour of 3 Officers and 101 Other Ranks from 1st Battalion Irish Guards will be on the Forecourt of Buckingham Palace for The Queen’s return in the carriage procession. When Her Majesty appears on the Balcony, the Guard of Honour will perform a feu du joie. Translated as “fire of joy”, a feu du joie is a ceremonial celebration whereby a salute is fired by rifles in rapid succession along a line of troops and back again, interspersed with bars of the National Anthem. The feu du joie was last performed in honour of Her Majesty The Queen’s 80th Birthday, following The Queen’s Birthday Parade in 2006.
Military personnel involved on the day will wear their respective Service ceremonial clothing.
There will be celebrations across many other nations of the Commonwealth, of which more later.