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London for Ceremonial
Household Division

Household Division

Scots Guards Regiment

1st Battalion Scots Guards returned to its ceremonial role for a short while in 2011, providing the Escort to the Colour at the Queen’s Birthday Parade. The photograph shows the Pipes and Drums and the Guard of Honour with the State Colour, about to step off to welcome the US President
The Scots Guards can trace their origins back to 1642 when the regiment was raised by Archibald, Marquis of Argyll, for service in Ireland.  Although the oldest of the Foot Guards regiments, its seniority as the third regiment dates from later when it became part of the English establishment.

In 1831 the Third Regiment of Foot Guards had its the Scottish title restored as the Scots Fusilier Guards, and in 1877 Queen Victoria changed this to the Scots Guards, in 1899 presenting them with a State Colour which is still carried on parade on special occasions in the presence of the sovereign.

It can reasonably be assumed that pipers would have been part of the regiment unofficially for some years before the addition of a pipe major and five pipers was authorised in 1856; the pipes and drums have since become a source of great pride and have sustained very high musical standards.  Pipers wear kilts of Royal Stuart tartan and blue doublets, originally with glengarries, but these were replaced by feather bonnets with blue and red hackles (the colours of the Household Division) on the orders of King George V in 1928.

More than three centuries of British history are reflected in the regiment’s battle honours, in more recent times for the night attack by the 2nd Battalion on Mount Tumbledown on 14th June 1982 to bring about the recapture of the Falkland Islands.

The 2nd Battalion was suspended in 1993 and its traditions are maintained by F Company, now stationed in Wellington Barracks to represent the Scots Guards for public duties and ceremonial, while the 1st Battalion continue their role as armoured infantry based at Catterick.

The Scots Guards can be identified on parade by the buttons spaced in groups of three, a thistle on the collar and no plume in the bearskin.

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