News

Pomp and pageantry for Queen’s birthday

  • Onlookers applaud as the island's uniformed services turn out for the Queen’s Birthday Parade (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
  • The Governor, John Rankin, inspects the RBR at the Queen’s Birthday Parade (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
  • Lieutenant-Colonel David Curley, Commanding Officer of the RBR (left) and Commissioner of Police Michael DeSilva, on his last parade before he retires,  inspect soldiers on parade  at the Queen’s Birthday celebrations.  (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
  • The RBR Band & Corps of Drums march down Front Street for the Queen’s Birthday Parade (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
  • The island's Sea Cadets on duty for the Queen’s Birthday Parade (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
  • RBR troops prepare to fire the traditonal feu de joie - a rolling rifle fire salute -  at the Queen’s Birthday Parade (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Bermuda’s uniformed services were out in force for the Queen’s Birthday Parade on Saturday morning.

The troops of the Royal Bermuda Regiment and its Band and Corps of Drums, police, the RBR’s Junior Leaders and the Sea Cadets paraded on Front Street before John Rankin, the Governor, David Burt, the Premier, and other dignitaries.

Ana Dawson and husband, Howard, watched their son, Joshua, 27, parade with the RBR.

She said: “I thought they did really well — they presented well. They kept formation and everything.”

Ms Dawson, from Devonshire, added: “As long as we are still British territory, it’s honouring that part of our heritage.”

Mr Dawson, a former 1980s conscript, said: “I did this myself. I think they are as good as we were — they were on point.”

Tiffany DeSilva, from St George’s, was at the parade to encourage her son, Jaiyir, who was on duty with the Sea Cadets.

She said: “They were excellent. I was very pleased with the entire performance.

“They were very professional and I’m very proud of them all.”

Private Darien Philpott, 23, one of the last conscripts called up for military service, said: “This is part of our culture. We’re a British territory and it’s good to see the military out and about doing things.

“I did my job — and everybody else did theirs.”

Private Philpott, from Hamilton Parish, said more people should consider a career in the island’s defence force.

He added: “As long as people know what they’re getting into. They have to get used to working as a team.

“You get some character built into you and you get paid for it. You also meet some interesting people.”

Private Leighton Griffiths, 42, a minibus driver in civilian life, said: “It’s really important and good for us to be out there.”

Major Duncan Simons, the RBR Adjutant, watched the soldiers go through their paces from the sidelines.

He said: “There are always small things we could do better, but overall it was great.

“A parade for us is the opportunity to be seen by the public. The RBR band and the Regiment is a symbol of our national pride and it’s fantastic to be seen on parade.”

Major Simons was speaking as the RBR prepares to welcome a new intake of recruits in the second Recruit Camp of the year at the start of next month.

About 25 soldiers will spend two weeks learning the basics of soldiering before they opt for specialisms, including maritime security with the RBR Boat Troop, the Band and Corps of Drums, medics, engineering, motor transport or logistics.

Major Simons said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming our newest soldiers and we aim to help them get the very most out of their time with us, both in uniform and in their civilian lives.”