COVID-19: Changing of the Guard held at Windsor Castle for first time since start of pandemic

July 22, 2021

The Changing of the Guard has been held at Windsor Castle for the first time since the initial coronavirus lockdown in March of last year.

On one of the hottest days of the year, soldiers from the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards, in their famous scarlet tunics and bearskin caps, paraded in front of hundreds of tourists basking in the scorching sunshine.

During the pandemic, the ceremony was stopped to avoid gatherings of the public and to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

An "Administrative Guard Mount" remained, meaning soldiers continued to take up their sentry duty positions.

But there was no ceremony as they changed over.

Arrangements are being made to resume the traditional spectacle at Buckingham Palace, too.

The Army's Household Division also mounts the Queen's Guard at the Tower of London, as well as performing ceremonial duties at Trooping the Colour and the State Opening of Parliament.

The soldiers have been kept busy during the pandemic, running coronavirus testing sites and vaccine centres.

They have also continued operational training, as well as playing a key role in the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral.

Guardsmen from the Household Division have been guarding the nation's kings and queens since 1660.

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