‘Outstanding’ sailors ready for Royal Palace duties

The senior Army officer inspecting Royal Navy sailors ahead of a month of Royal duties described the performance of the 104 men and women as “outstanding”.

From Monday, sailors representing three of the Senior Service’s five fighting arms – the Surface Fleet, Submarine Service and Fleet Air Arm – will stand guard at four Royal residences, beginning with Buckingham Palace.

The officers and ratings have stepped in to help out the Army with many Foot Guards Battalions busy overseas on operations or training for future contingencies.

To take over the role, the sailors have drilled and practised extensively – practise which culminated in a ‘Fit For Role’ parade judged by the guardians of State Ceremonial, the officers of the Army’s Household Division.

The parade at London’s Wellington Barracks is the final inspection to ensure the Royal Navy’s preparedness to take the place of the famous Foot Guards regiments.

The sailors were outstanding and had clearly put a huge amount into their preparation, assisted by the Company Sergeant Major of Number 7 Company, Coldstream Guards and his team

Lieutenant Colonel Guy Stone

Pronouncing them ready to take over duties at Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, St James Palace and the Tower of London, Brigade Major of the Household Division Lieutenant Colonel Guy Stone said:

“They were well turned out, confident of all guard change formats and clearly enjoying the experience.”

Public Duties will now start this Monday at Buckingham Palace when, at 11am, they will Change the Guard with 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards.

Palace duties also means Royal Navy and Royal Marines musicians will be in demand for the next month, with one of the Senior Service bands providing musical support whenever the Navy is mounting or dismounting the guard.