King Charles III celebrated the first Trooping the Colour ceremony of his reign on Saturday, June 17.
Over 1400 troops, 200 horses and 400 musicians from across the Household Division marked The King’s official birthday.
This military ceremony dates back to the early eighteenth century or earlier, when the colours (flags) of the battalion were carried (or ‘trooped’) down the ranks so that they could be seen and recognised by the soldiers.
Since 1748, this parade has also marked the Sovereign’s official birthday.
King Charles joined the parade on horseback
Crowds gathered along the route in St James’s Park watching on as The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery Battery made their way around the Queen Victoria Memorial ahead of Trooping the Colour.
King Charles joined the Birthday Parade on horseback, marking the first time that the reigning monarch has ridden at Trooping the Colour since 1986, when Queen Elizabeth II last rode.
God Save The King.
HM King Charles III becomes the first monarch in decades to ride on horseback during Trooping the Colour, His Majesty’s Official Birthday. pic.twitter.com/V4oLbvTPyW
— Darren Grimes (@darrengrimes_) June 17, 2023
The troops processed from Buckingham Palace down The Mall before forming up on Horse Guard’s Parade ready for inspection by The King.
King Charles was saluted as Colonel in Chief of the seven regiments of the Household Division on Horse Guards Parade.
Prince Edward, The Duke of Edinburgh, who is also The King’s brother and the youngest child of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, rode in the parade as Colonel of the London Guards for the first time.
He has been Royal Colonel of the London Regiment since 2011, which was re-designated the London Guards last year.
King Charles’s birthday celebrated with spectacular procession and flypast
King Charles was joined by Queen Camilla and other members of the Royal Family to view the 1st Battalion Welsh Guards Troop their Colour.
— Royal Central (@RoyalCentral) June 17, 2023
The Honourable Artillery Company (HAC Regiment) fired a 62-round gun salute at the Tower of London during the ceremony, which concluded with a spectacular tri-service flypast.
A fly past of 70 aircraft over The Mall brings Trooping the Colour to a close for 2023 ✈️ pic.twitter.com/lsZtywRJKW
— The Royal Parks (@theroyalparks) June 17, 2023
A total seventy aircraft from the Royal Navy, the British Army and the Royal Air Force celebrated The King’s official birthday with a flypast at 1 p.m. local time, flying through the skies above Buckingham Palace and the British Royal Family.
— The Army in London (@ArmyInLondon) June 17, 2023
King Charles III, formerly known as The Prince of Wales, became King on the death of his mother Queen Elizabeth II on 8 September 2022. His Coronation Service took place on May 6, 2023.
Last year, during the Trooping of the Colour of Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee, The King took the salute at Horse Guards on behalf of Her Majesty.