The Coldstream Guards

17th, 18th, 19th, 20th and 21st June, 1930


"... Another spectacle, dated 1660, will tell the story of a regiment. The Regiment of Coldstream Guards is not scheduled as the oldest in the British Army; but it certainly is unique in being the only Regiment of Foot which is lineally descended from a regiment that fought under Cromwell. General Monck and his Coldstream Regiment fought courageously for the Commonwealth on many fields, and Monck himself won victories afloat as well as ashore; but, with Cromwell dead and national chaos impending, commander and regiment took the only course which promised peace and stability to the nation, the restoration of [parliament and] the monarchy. The Tatoo picture depicts the transfer of allegiance; but it does considerably more, for it shows the picturesque uniforms, the (to us) quaint equipment and quainter weapons and drill of those old-time soldiers who served the "Merry Monarch" [Charles II] as loyally and courageously as they served the grave Dictator [Oliver Cromwell]."

10:25 p.m.
Monck's Regiment of Foot, 1660-1661
"The Coldstreamers"

  Monck's Regiment had its origin in two units of Cromwell's 'New Model Army,' which mustered in 1643 and 1645.
  This Regiment, and the Royal Horse Guards, remained embodied as distinct units, the former to be known henceforth as the 'Lord General's (Coldstream) Regiment of Foot Guards.'
  On February 14, 1661, two Officers and two Civil Commissioners drove in a coach to Tower Hill, where the Lord General's Regiment was mustered.
  The Commissioners read them an address from the King, at the conclusion of which they were ordered to lay down their arms as soldiers of Cromwell's New Model Army and to take them up again in the name of King Charles II.
  Hence this Regiment--which on the death of Monck, the Lord General [in 1670], became the Coldstream Guards--although ranking second on the list of Infantry, is the oldest regular regiment of the British Army, and has as its motto 'Nulli Secundus.'
  The Regiment was armed with matchlocks and pikes.
  The scene depicted in the arena will show:

  The drums and flutes commence playing; the fort doors open; a guard of musketeers turns out. The regiment enters the arena in column of sixes headed by drums and flutes.
  On entering the arena the column wheels half right and advances to the centre of the arena.
  The Commanding Officer then orders:
    "Pikemen and Musketeers take heed. To the left face."
  The whole column advances towards the Grand Stand, Officers and Colours taking post in front of Companies.
  The Commanding Officer next orders:
    "Take heed. Halt."
  Whereupon Nos. 4, 5 and 6 ranks turn about.
  After that is done, the Commanding Officer orders:
    "Take heed to open order."
  Then will follow the command:
    "No. 3 rank stand fast. From No. 3 rank, to four paces, march."
  That is followed by the order:
    "Straighten your ranks and files."
  Whilst the regiment is carrying out the foregoing commands a coach and pair enter and drive along the edge of the arena. Four passengers alight. They are the Parliamentary Commissioners, two officers and two civilians. As they leave the coach the regiment presents arms and the drums and flutes play a tune. The Commissioners move forward and raise their hats. The Commanding Officer rides forward, salutes, and shakes hands with the Commissioners. They hold a short conversation. The Commanding Officer then raises his hat, rides back to the regiment and gives the command:
    "Take heed to break your ranks and pay attention to what you hear."
  The four Commissioners advance a few paces, and divide into pairs. The troops break ranks and run up and form a semi-circle round each pair of Commissioners. The Commissioners then address the troops.
  At the end of the address the pikemen and musketeers give loud cheers, raise their hats and their weapons, and shout "God save King Charles II." They fire their matchlocks in the air. The Commanding Officer raises his hand for silence and the ensigns, carrying the colours, double back and take post. The pikemen and musketeers now re-form Companies on the Colours. The Commanding Officer gives the order, "Lay down your arms," and pikemen and musketeers ground muskets and spears. The command to retire follows. The three Companies turn about and march away, halt, and face the Grand Stand.
  The Commanding Officer then orders: "To your arms." The drums beat and each pikeman and musketeer runs to his arms.
  Then comes the command: "In the name of King Charles II, pick up your arms. Shoulder your matchlocks and advance your spears."
  The Regiment presents arms.
  The Commissioners then raise their hats.
  The Commanding Officer orders: "Take position as you were. Take heed to counter march from your right to your left--To the right face, march!"
  With drums beating, they right wheel and counter march through ranks, march past the Grand Stand, and salute the Royal Box.

Coldstream Guards Pugaree Badge

  Troops taking part:

"I will reduce the military power in obedience to the civil."
                                                             George Monck

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