TROOPING THE COLOUR/QUEEN'S BIRTHDAY PARADE
ROYAL MILITARY COLLEGE OF AUSTRALIA TOMORROW
The annual Trooping of the Queen's Colour to celebrate the birthday of
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth 11, the Queen of Australia, is to be held
at the Royal Military College of Australia, Duntroon tomorrow (6/6).
The parade, to begin at 10.15 am will be reviewed by the Governor-General,
Sir William Deane.
The annual Trooping of the Queen's Colour is perhaps the most colourful
and picturesque ceremonial activity conducted at the College. It is an
occasion on which the discipline, pride and bearing of the Corps of Staff
Cadets is displayed at its best advantage.
The custom of carrying Colours has its origin in ancient and medieval
times when, during battle, warring factions carried flags bearing family
badges or armorial bearings to show the position of commanders and to
serve as rallying points. The Colours embody the history, spirit and traditions
of the unit to which they belong. They are highly valued, carefully guarded
and treated with great respect.
Since 1751 regiments have been allowed two colours only: the Queen's
(or King's) Colour and the Regimental Colour. Although no longer carried
into battle, Colours remain a symbol of the regiment, for in them are
borne the battle honours granted in recognition of gallant deeds performed
by its members.
The origin of the Trooping of the Colour is concerned with the lodging
of the colour, which consisted of the Colour or Colours being displayed
from the ensign's quarters, or some other safe place. The battalion marched
past the Colours and so came to know, in case of alarm, the place of their
rallying point. This ceremony gradually grew in complexity and dignity
until in 1755 it was incorporated into the regular guard mounting parade
of the Foot Guards, to lend interest to the occasion. The music played
during the "lodging" was called a 'troop' and gradually the
word 'trooping' ousted the 'lodging' as descriptive of the ceremony.
The Queen's Colour was trooped for the first time at the Royal Military
College of Australia on the Queen's Birthday Parade in 1956, a practice
which has continued since then.
Colours were first presented to the Corps of Staff Cadets by His Majesty
King George V1 when, as Duke of York, he visited Australia in 1927. These
colours are now lodged in Patterson Hall, the Headquarters of the Royal
Military College of Australia. The present colours were presented by Her
Majesty Queen Elizabeth 11 on 10 May 1988.
The Champion Company of the Corps of Staff Cadets is named after the
Sovereign's Company and it carries the Queen Elizabeth the Second's Banner,
which was first presented to the Corps of Staff Cadets by Her Majesty
the Queen Mother on February 26, 1958. The Sovereign's Company is entitled
to carry the Banner on all ceremonial parades as well as escorting the
Queen's Colour during the Trooping of the Colour. In 1998 Kapyong Company
is the Sovereign's Company.
The Royal Military College of Australia was founded in 1911 on the historic
Duntroon property. In the 87 years of its history, the College has graduated
over five thousand young men and women from all walks of life to be officers
in the regular armies of Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Singapore,
Thailand, India, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Vanuatu and Kuwait.
For Further Information on the Queen's Birthday parade, please
ring the Protocol Section at the Royal Military College of Australia on
(02) 62759515, or (02) 6275 9539.