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United Kingdom: Household Cavalry

Last modified: 2013-06-22 by rob raeside
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Recently I browsed a magazine (can't remember its name) showing the consecration of the new standards of Household Cavalry. As far as the HC is concerned, they get a new set of standards every ten years. The interesting thing is that, while the Life Guards has four standards, the Blues and Royals has four standards plus  one guidon. I guess it is a legacy from the Royal Dragoons, which merged with the Royal Horse Guards ('Blues') in 1969 to become Blues and Royals.
Miles Li, 21 October 2003

Does the need for four standards each have to do with the post-1991 organization in which each regiment has three squadrons, two operational and one ceremonial, so that there's one standard for the regiment as a whole and one for each squadron? And Miles, do you have any idea whether all the standards within a regiment are of the same design?
Joe McMillan, 21 October 2003

As far as I can tell,  Household Cavalry has always had one standard for each squadron. The designs remain basically the same as those illustrated on Standards, Guidons and Colours of the Commonwealth Forces by T.J.Edwards in 1953.
Miles Li
, 21 October 2003

At a parade on 30th May 1973, the new regiment received one Sovereign's standard and three Union standards to add to the guidon, presented in the previous year. The Sovereign's standard is crimson with the Royal arms above the regimental battle honours, and with the Royal cipher to either side of the arms (split Eii / R). The Union standard is similar, but the arms are replaced by a crowned Union sprig (thistle, rose, and shamrock on the same stem) entwined with a scroll bearing the motto 'Dieu et mon droit'.

The Blues have carried four standards since 1794, when a fourth squadron was added to the establishment, although it is only since 1873 that the regiment has carried a Sovereign's and three Union standards. So I think they have four standards because they have done so for a long time, and the 1991 organisation is simply catching up with the scale of issue of standards :-) The standard carried during Changing the Guard ceremonies is a Union standard, so the three might be used in rotation, rather than attributing a standard to a particular squadron.
Ian Sumner, 22 October 2003

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