Duke of Edinburgh to Visit 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards

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The Duke of Edinburgh will visit 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards at Lille Barracks
The Duke of Edinburgh (centre) talking to soldiers during his visit to the First Battalion Grenadier Guards at Lille Barracks in Aldershot, Hampshire, February 2014.

The Duke of Edinburgh will visit 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards at Lille Barracks

Thursday 30th March 2017

The Duke of Edinburgh, Colonel, Grenadier Guards, will visit 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards at Lille Barracks, Aldershot, on Thursday 30th March 2017.

The Grenadier Guards are an elite British Army infantry regiment. World renowned for their tunics and bearskins as well as their capability on operations, they are one of the oldest regiments in the Army with a proud history of service in times of war and peace – be it on operations in Iraq and Afghanistan or guarding the Royal palaces. The 1st Battalion consists of three Rifle companies, and Support Company which consists of an anti-tank platoon, a mortar platoon, a reconnaissance platoon and a sniper platoon.

The Duke of Edinburgh takes a lively interest in the Regiment’s activities. During the visit, HRH will receive a Battalion briefing and watch the final of an inter-company football competition, the Manchester Cup. HRH will meet soldiers in the Sergeants’ Mess and stay for lunch in the Officers’ Mess.

The Duke of Edinburgh has been Colonel of the Regiment since 1975. HRH has visited the Battalion on many occasions, including UK based exercises and on operations.

Throughout 2017, the 1st Battalion is on 48hrs notice to move as the Spearhead Battle Group for NATO’s Very High Readiness Joint Task Force. Known as the VJTF(L), this 14 nation Task Force is designed to enhance NATO’s responsiveness as agreed at the 2014 NATO Summit in Cardiff. If activated, the VJTF(L) will be able to move at short notice, following the warnings and indicators of potential threats, to act as a potential deterrent to further escalation. The UK is the lead nation for the delivery of the VJTF(L) throughout 2017.

1st Battalion Grenadier Guards has Latvian and Albanian Rifle Companies, as well as a Dutch Royal Marine Squadron under command for its VJTF(L) tasks. The Spearhead Battle Group is deliberately made up of light infantry and has a diverse multinational flavour in order to support rapid intervention into potential NATO theatres of operations. To achieve this 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards has trained extensively, deploying to Kenya in June and July, to Germany in September and to Latvia with its multinational Companies in October. The Battalion has greatly enjoyed developing these relationships and making this unprecedented level of interoperability work.

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