What is Trooping the Colour?

Since 1748, the British Sovereign’s official birthday in June has been marked by the event known as Trooping the Colour. Over 1,400 soldiers, 200 horses and up to 400 musicians present a parade to mark the occasion.


The parade processes from Buckingham Palace and down The Mall to Horse Guard’s Parade, together with members of the Royal Family on horseback and in carriages. The parade ends with a now traditional fly-past by the RAF, which will be watched by the King and his family from the balcony at Buckingham Palace.

When is Trooping the Colour 2023?

For the King's first Trooping the Colour as sovereign, the event will take place on Saturday 17th June by Regiments of the Household Division, on Horse Guards Parade, with the King attending and taking the salute.

Who will be taking part?

The 1st Battalion Welsh Guards will Troop their Colour in the presence of the King. There will be over 1350 soldiers of the Household Division and King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery, including over 300 musicians from the Massed Bands. There will also be 250 soldiers from the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards, the 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards, the 1st Battalion Irish Guards and, for the first time, the 1st Battalion London Guards (the Foot Guards’ Reserve Unit), who will line the processional route along The Mall.

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There are three newly appointed Colonels within the Foot Guards:

  • Colonel, Grenadier Guards - The Queen Consort
  • Colonel, Welsh Guards - The Prince of Wales
  • Colonel, Irish Guards - The Princess of Wales

What bands will play at this year's Trooping The Colour?

Music is traditionally provided by the massed bands of the foot guards and the mounted Band of the Household Cavalry, together with a Corps of Drums, often with pipers, totally around 400 musicians.

What music will they play?

This varies from year to year, but will invariably include at least two renditions of the National Anthem – one for the arrival at Buckingham Palace, another for the end of the procession.


The parade itself, which involves at various stages slow marches and quick marches, will most probably include such favourites as ‘The British Grenadiers’ (a ‘quick’ 17th-century march probably heard since the original Trooping the Colour), ‘Freedom of Windsor’, and the march from Meyerbeer’s Les Huguenots (a slow march often used at such events). Given the Welsh Guard's special place in the parade, we may also expect the invigorating ‘Welshman' or even 'Men of Harlech'?