The Guard Changing Ceremony by Queen’s Life Guards (Life Guards and Blues and Royals) from Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment (HCMR) at Horse Guards and Horse Guards Parade in Whitehall, London.
The guard is usually provided by the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, with the Life Guards and the Blues and Royals alternating.
This is a different event from the “Changing the Guard” ceremony (Guard Mounting) performed at Buckingham Palace by the Queen’s Guards.
“The Queen’s Life Guard is provided by men of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment (HCMR) at Horse Guards.
The HCMR consists of a Squadron of The Life Guards, who wear red tunics and white plumed helmets, and a Squadron of The Blues and Royals (Royal Horse Guards and 1st Dragoons) with blue tunics and red plumed helmets.
In early times the Guard was as much as 100 strong and provided Escorts to accompany the Sovereign if he or she travelled by road. It now consists of either a Long Guard or a Short Guard.
When The Queen is in London, the Guard consists of 1 Officer, 1 Corporal Major (who carries the Standard), 2 Non-Commissioned Officers, 1 Trumpeter and 10 Troopers. This is known as a Long Guard.
When Her Majesty is not resident in London, the Guard is reduced to 2 Non-Commissioned Officers and 10 Troopers.
Horse Guards is named after the troops who have mounted the Queen’s Life Guard on this spot since the Restoration of King Charles II in 1660 and remains the official entrance to St James’s and Buckingham Palace. This is why The Queen’s Life Guard is still mounted here. Apart from members of the Royal Family or cavalrymen on duty, everyone needs the Sovereign’s permission in the form of an Ivory Pass to either drive or ride through Horse Guards.
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