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The Regimental Shop Grenadier Guards Beret Badge

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About this deal

On behalf of The Regimental Lieutenant Colonel, Major General James Bowder OBE, the day-to-day management of Regimental Headquarters is the responsibility of Major (Retired) James Gatehouse. He is assisted by Captain Ted Bennett and WO2(RQMS) Richard Archer. those wounded or injured on operations, particularly those who have had to leave the Army; to assist in finding them new employment and to help them become active family and community members. King Charles II was in exile, and England lay under the military dictatorship of Cromwell, the Lord Protector. In May of that year the King formed his Royal Regiment of Guards at Bruges, under the Colonelcy of Lord Wentworth. The Regiment was first recruited from the loyal men who had followed their King into exile rather than live under tyranny, and their reward came in 1660 when the King was restored to his throne. After the Restoration, a second Royal Regiment of Guards was formed in England under the Colonelcy of Colonel John Russell. In 1665, following Lord Wentworth's death, both Regiments were incorporated into a single Regiment with twenty-four Companies, whose royal badges or devices, given by King Charles II, are still emblazoned on its Colours.

The rank of Guardsman replaced that of Private in all Guards Regiments in 1919, an honour awarded by the King in recognition of their great effort during the War. In 1939 the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Battalions again returned to the Continent, forming part of the British Expeditionary Force under Lord Gort, himself a Grenadier. During the retreat of 1940, the traditional discipline of the Regiment stood the test as it had done at First Ypres, Corunna and Waterloo. Two of its Battalions fought in the Division then commanded by Major General, later Field Marshal, Montgomery and another in that commanded by Major General, later Field Marshal, Alexander. At Dunkirk, which the Regiment had garrisoned under Charles II, it took part in the defences of the perimeter, under cover of which the embarkation of the Army was made. In the course of that year the 4th Battalion was re-formed, and in 1941 two further Battalions, the 5th and 6th, were raised. The Regiment, later termed "The First Regiment of Foot Guards", and now called "The First or Grenadier Regiment of Foot Guards", has fought in almost every major campaign of the British Army from that time until our own. Under the last two Stuart Kings it fought against the Moors at Tangiers, and in America, and even took part as Marines in the naval wars against the Dutch.

Late 19th century

In the long series of wars against France - then the chief military power of Europe - that covered fifty-six of the 126 years between 1689 and 1815, the 1st Guards played their part. They fought at Dettingen and Fontenoy, where the superb steadiness of their advance under a murderous cannonade won the admiration of both armies. Rigid attention to detail, flawless perfection of uniform and equipment and a discipline of steel were the hard school in which the tempered metal of the Regiment was made for the service of the State. Yet running through that tradition of discipline, of harsh punishments, of undeviating rule, ran a vein of poetry, of humour, of loyalty to comrade, of sense of belonging to something greater than any individual, something undying and profound. And the letters and diaries of men of the Regiment of those days bear witness to it. Whilst 'duty of care' for wounded Grenadiers lies with the Ministry of Defence and with appropriate Government Departments such as Health, the Regiment continues to assist all Grenadiers [and their families] who have been affected by serious injury or disability by providing the right support at the right time in the right place.The Colonel's Fund Grenadier Guards was created in 2006 to supplement existing Regimental charitable funds. The Fund is designed to support:

Regimental Headquarters also manages the Regimental Charity on behalf of the Trustees. In addition, the staff of Regimental Headquarters assist with many of the State Ceremonial events in London.

Order of precedence

In the Gulf war of 1991, the 1st Battalion went from the British Army of the Rhine (BAOR) - Germany - to fight in their Warrior armoured personnel carriers. They then returned to London to Troop their Colour on the Queen's Birthday Parade in 1992, before going to South Armagh for a six-month operational tour in Northern Ireland. They then carried out operational tours in the Falkland Isles and a two-year operational tour in Northern Ireland. After a fierce encounter at Quatre Bras on June 16th, 1815, in which the 3rd Battalion suffered heavy casualties, Wellington's Army withdrew to Waterloo, and on Sunday June 18th, was fought the battle in which the Regiment gained its present title and undying fame. During the morning the light companies of the Guards defended the farm of Hougoumont, the light companies of the 1st Guards being withdrawn later to join their battalions - the 2nd and 3rd Battalions. At evening these two battalions, together forming the 1st Brigade, were in position behind the ridge which gave shelter to the Army. At this point Napoleon directed his final assault with fresh troops - the Imperial Guard, which had hitherto been maintained in reserve. That assault was utterly defeated, and, in honour of their defeat of the Grenadiers of the French Imperial Guard, the 1st Guards were made a Regiment of Grenadiers and given the title of "First or Grenadier Regiment of Foot Guards" which they bear to this day. The Grenade was adopted as a badge and the Bearskin Cap was worn after Waterloo.

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