The Household Cavalry, whose duty is to guard the British Sovereign, moved into their new barracks yesterday (Thursday October 22) in a fashionable area of London.
GV Horse Guards along road
GV Horse Guard Band (mounted) along road
GV Horse Guards assemble outside entrance to new barracks (3 shots)
SV Horse Guards with new Skyscraper living quarters in background
SV cavalry assembled for opening ceremony
SV plaque unveiled
GV Horseguards enter new Barracks (3 shots)
SV gates of barracks close
Initials PAF/AS/ESS.17.20 PAF/AS/PS/1735
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Background: The Household Cavalry, whose duty is to guard the British Sovereign, moved into their new barracks yesterday (Thursday October 22) in a fashionable area of London. The new Hyde Park Barracks, which cost GBP 3,600,000 (7,200,000 dollars), were opened by Field Marshal Sir Gerald Templar.
Mounted squadrons of the Life Guards and The Blues and Royals -- the two regiments which make up the Household Cavalry -- rode out of their Wellington Barracks with the band of The Blues and Royals. Moving at the regulation cavalry walking pace of four miles on hour (seven kilometres per hour) with helmets and cuirasses gleaming, they rode up the processional way to their new barracks.
The Hyde Park Barracks were designed by the famous English architect, Sir Basil Spence. It will house both the men, their families, and their horses. The stables are on two levels and can accommodate 273 horses. An original plan to have the officers Mess at the top of the skyscraper had to be abandoned as tradition demands that once a year a horse is ridden into the Mass and given champagne, and the lifts were incapable of carrying a horse to the top.
The 31-storey skyscraper overlooking Hyde Park give the soldiers' families the finest view in London and at a fraction of the normal market rice.
Field Marshal Sir Gerald Templar and Earl Mountbatten of Burma -- he Colonels of the two regiments -- unveiled a plaque to formally open the barracks. The men then ceremonially rode into their new luxury home.
The two regiments have origins older than any other cavalry regiment in the British Army. The tympanum over the gates of the new barracks was brought with the Household Cavalry from their old barracks.