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London for Ceremonial
Beating Retreat

Beating Retreat

Dates:Wed 11 Jun
Thurs 12 Jun
Time:8:30pm Where:Horse Guards Parade


The Household Division’s Beating Retreat – a spectacular evening pageant of music and military precision drill, including horses, cannon and fireworks – will take place on the 11th and 12th of June this year.

These annual concerts are performed on Horse Guards Parade in front of the beautiful backdrop of St James’s Park each year on the Wednesday and Thursday evenings preceding the Queen’s Birthday Parade, or “Trooping TheColour” as it is often called.

Military Beating Retreat concerts have a long tradition dating back to the 1690s. Originally the beating of the drum was used to order troops to break off fighting and withdraw to the safety of camp as darkness fell, later it signaled the closing of the camp gates at the end of the day and called troops back to base for the night. Today a Beating Retreat is an evening military concert with a marching display and usually marks the lowering of the Regimental flag at sunset.

This year’s concert will be performed by the Massed Bands and Corps of Drums of Her Majesty The Queen’s Household Division – combining 250 Foot Guards and Mounted Cavalry musicians with the gun carriages of The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery. There will be choral accompaniment from the Royal Choral Society and guest appearances from three visiting bands; The Troupe de Marine Band and Band of the Legion d’Etrangere (Foreign Legion) from France and the Vancouver Police Pipe Band from Canada.  

Soldiers of the Household Division are instantly recognisable through their distinctive uniforms and headdress and have a history spanning over three centuries. The Senior Director of Music this year is from the Irish Guards (of which HRH Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, is the Colonel of the Regiment).

Invariably described as ‘truly spectacular’ and ‘London at its finest’ the Household Division Beating Retreat cannot be seen anywhere else in the world and is a not to be missed event.

“Beating Retreat. Epic.” 

“London at its finest”

“Amazing, Amazing, Amazing.”   

“A perfect event in a perfect venue”

Horse Guards Parade

Wed 11 Jun
Thurs 12 Jun

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