Where are the Royal Horse Artillery based and when were they formed?
The funeral of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, England’s longest-reigning monarch, takes place today (Monday, September 19) at 11am in Westminster Abbey. Here we look at the Royal Horse Artillery, including when they were formed and where the Royal Horse Artillery is based, as well as other units.
The body of Queen Elizabeth II. has been lying in state for the past few days at Westminster Hall, which will officially end at 6.30am today when her coffin is taken to Westminster Abbey for a state funeral.
Following the funeral service, the casket will arrive at Windsor at 3.06pm where the state hearse will join the procession.
Members of the royal family will be joining the procession as the royal unit, the Royal Horse Artillery, which we have already seen in previous days, will be firing on the East Lawn at Windsor Castle.
The Queen’s coffin was carried from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall by the Royal Horse Artillery
On Wednesday 14 September, Her Majesty the Queen’s coffin was carried in procession on a carriage of the Royal Horse Artillery from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall, where she lay in state for four days.
The carriage that was used to transport the Queen’s coffin belongs to the Royal Army’s Royal Horse Artillery. It was previously used to carry the coffins of King George VI in 1952 and the Queen Mother in 2002.
The Royal Artillery of the Royal Troop regularly used for royal salutes
Earlier, the guns of the Royal Army Artillery were fired from Hyde Park. One shot was fired for every minute for the duration of the parade, which amounted to approximately 38 shots.
The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery has six 13-pounder rapid-fire guns, manufactured between 1913 and 1918, all of which saw active service in the First and Second World Wars. They are regularly used for royal salutes in Hyde Park, Green Park or Windsor Great Park for state occasions and on royal anniversaries and royal birthdays.
On September 9, the Royal Army Artillery arrived in Hyde Park for a 96-shot Gun Salute – one for each year of Queen Elizabeth II’s life.
On Monday, the Queen’s coffin will be carried in a Royal Navy state hearse pulled by 98 Royal Navy sailors.
More about the Royal Horse Artillery and when they were formed
The Royal Horse Artillery (RHA) was formed in January 1793 at Goodwood, Sussex by the 3rd Duke of Richmond in 1793.
It was formed as a distinct arm of the Royal Regiment of Artillery to provide horse artillery support to the cavalry units of the British Army. In November 1793, two more soldiers joined them.
Today, the RHA is operationally part of the Order of Battle “The Gunners” or Royal Artillery. There are currently four separate regiments that wear the cypher (cap badge) of the RHA:
- Royal Troop, Royal Horse Artillery (active since 1946). They are primarily a ceremonial unit used to fire salvos on royal and state occasions. They also provide a carriage and a team of black horses for state funerals.
- 1st Regiment Royal Horse Artillery (active since 1939)
- 3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery (active since 1938)
- 7th (Parachute) Regiment of Royal Horse Artillery (active since 1961)
The Royal Horse Artillery provided the Queen’s Guard on three occasions:
- 1 RHA – January 1979
- 7 Para RHA – March 1989
- King’s Troop – April 2007
Where is it based today?
Current units of the Royal Horse Artillery are based at various locations around the country. The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery is based at the Royal Artillery Barracks in Woolwich, London. It is the previous home of the Gunners.
The 1st Regiment of the Royal Horse Artillery is currently based at Larkhill Garrison, Larkhill, a garrison town in Wiltshire, England.
The 3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery is currently based at Albemarle Barracks, Northumberland, England.
The 7th (Parachute) Regiment Royal Horse Artillery is based at Merville Barracks, Colchester Garrison in Colchester, Essex.
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