On Tuesday 15th December more than 40 guests, including the Northern Area APGM, WBro Alan Kirwilliam, attended the latest East Ribble District Lodge Mentor and LMO Event when WBro Andrew Taylor gave a fascinating insight into many aspects of almost 22 years serving with the Household Cavalry in the Blues and Royals.

A brief history of how the seven regiments of the Household Division came into being culminated with an explanation of how their uniforms differ, down to being able to identify each of the five Infantry Divisions by their tunic buttons and colours and positions of their Bearskin cockade. Andrew recounted his desire to join a tank regiment, motivated by his Uncle Harry’s tales and his almost accidental assignment into the Blues and Royals. Tales of his work with the United Nations in Nicosia were followed by riding school antics and the injuries received whilst riding without stirrups! Andrew took us on a brief tour of the Household Cavalry stables and alluded to more tales from another of his presentations, including presenting the horses to the Queen and the time he met the Grand Master.

Following the presentation Andrew invited questions from the audience, which gave us further insight into his astonishing career, including his witnessing of the Hyde Park Bombing by the IRA in 1982 whilst in a trainee troop. One of the guests remembered the Regiments summer camps in Norfolk and recounted seeing the horses being ridden on the beaches. Andrew was asked if he’d ever been under shell fire whilst in a tank, in answer to which he told a tale about Canadian live fire exercises, the constipated Mars Bar eating Arthur Gillard and a shovel recce with a toilet roll; very funny but you need to hear it from Andrew.

WBro Alan Kirwilliam closed the meeting with a few words of thanks to Andrew for an excellent presentation and to those who had helped with the organisation. He thanked all for attending, wishing them a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, hoping that it wouldn’t be too long until we’re all able to meet again in person.

Article and Images: East Ribble District Team