Earl of Wessex presents new colours to Royal Gibraltar Regiment

Prince Edward dons his military uniform to present new colours to the Royal Gibraltar Regiment at Windsor Castle in first engagement since his father Prince Philip’s memorial

  • Earl of Wessex presented new colours to Royal Gibraltar Regiment at event today
  • Every military unit has its own distinctive symbolic colours, or flags 
  • Edward, 58, the Queen’s youngest son, led the ceremony at Windsor Castle  
  • The ceremony comes days after Edward attended Prince Philip’s memorial 
  • Prince Edward presented new colours to the Royal Gibraltar Regiment at a ceremony at Windsor Castle today, on behalf of the Queen.

    Edward, 58, the youngest son of monarch, was pictured smiling as he donned full ceremonial military uniform for the event.

    It marks his first engagement since the service of thanksgiving honouring his father on Tuesday.  

    The Earl of Wessex, 58 (pictured) was pictured smiling and wearing full military garb today, while he presented new colours to the Royal Gibraltar Regiment

    The Earl of Wessex, 58 (pictured) was pictured smiling and wearing full military garb today, while he presented new colours to the Royal Gibraltar Regiment

    Edward led the ceremony today, which took place at Windsor castle

    Edward led the ceremony today, which took place at Windsor castle 

    The Royal Gibraltar Regiment (pictured) are in the UK for the first time in almost 10 years, with personnel guarding the Tower of London, St James Palace, Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace

    The Royal Gibraltar Regiment (pictured) are in the UK for the first time in almost 10 years, with personnel guarding the Tower of London, St James Palace, Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace

    The ceremony followed Tuesday's memorial service for Prince Philip, which Edward attended with wife Sophie (pictured, right) and their children Louise and James (centre L and R)

    The ceremony followed Tuesday’s memorial service for Prince Philip, which Edward attended with wife Sophie (pictured, right) and their children Louise and James (centre L and R)

    Today’s presentation took place while the Royal Gibraltar Regiment are in the UK for the first time in almost 10 years, conducting ceremonial public duties. 

    These include guarding the Tower of London, St James Palace, Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace. 

    Prince Edward wore a row of medals, including the Royal Victorian Order Star and Order of the Garter Star, which were given by the Queen. 

    Speaking today, Edward told the troops: ‘This is your Sovereign’s personal recognition of your professionalism, skill, courage and unique contribution to our nation’s defence.’ 

    Members of the royal family sometimes mark a special anniversary or event in a Regiment's history by presenting the unit with new regimental Colours

    Members of the royal family sometimes mark a special anniversary or event in a Regiment’s history by presenting the unit with new regimental Colours

    The Earl of Wessex donned a full military ceremonial outfit for the occasion

    He wore a row of medals including the Royal Victorian Order Star and Order of the Garter Star

    The Earl of Wessex donned a full military ceremonial outfit for the occasion, also donning a row of medals including the Royal Victorian Order Star and Order of the Garter Star, which were given by the Queen

    The presentation generally includes a parade and an inspection by the attending royal, who may also give a speech

    The presentation generally includes a parade and an inspection by the attending royal, who may also give a speech

    Ceremony: the Royal Gibraltar Regiment (pictured) did a parade during today's event, in which they were presented with new colours

    Ceremony: the Royal Gibraltar Regiment (pictured) did a parade during today’s event, in which they were presented with new colours

    He added: ‘On behalf of Her Majesty, I hand over these colours in the confidence that you will guard them well. That they will be symbols of the Royal Gibraltar Regiment’s enduring spirit and devotion to duty. 

    ‘That it will inspire you in the face of uncertainties. That as an emblem of your achievements it will be an embodiment of your Regiment’s traditions, heritage and ethos.

    ‘But most importantly, I give it into your care as a token of Her Majesty’s admiration and trust in each and every one of you and in the regiment in which you serve.’ 

    Windsor: The Wessex family are local to Windsor Castle, living a few miles away at Bagshot Park. Prince Philip's funeral last year was held at the castle

    Windsor: The Wessex family are local to Windsor Castle, living a few miles away at Bagshot Park. Prince Philip’s funeral last year was held at the castle

    Today's event capped an emotional few days for Prince Edward, who is understood to have shared a strong bond with his father Prince Philip, whose memorial took place this week

    Today’s event capped an emotional few days for Prince Edward, who is understood to have shared a strong bond with his father Prince Philip, whose memorial took place this week

    New colours: the Regiment's new colours are prepared during the ceremony, ready to replace the unit's former flag

    New colours: the Regiment’s new colours are prepared during the ceremony, ready to replace the unit’s former flag

    Three cheers were given for the Queen, with the troops raising their white helmets in her honour, during the ceremony. 

    All military units have their own distinctive Colours, or flags. 

    While they were historically used in battle, they are now symbolic, and represent the regiment’s devotion to duty. 

    Members of the royal family will sometimes mark a special anniversary or event in a Regiment’s history by presenting the unit with new regimental Colours.

    The presentation generally includes a parade and an inspection by the attending royal, who may also give a speech.

    Today’s ceremony was a local appointment for Edward, as the Wessex family lives at nearby Bagshot Park, just a few miles from Windsor Castle.

    The event came days after Prince Philip’s memorial on Tuesday, which Edward attended with his wife Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, 57, and their children Lady Louise Windsor, 18, and James, Viscount Severn, 14.