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The Duke of Edinburgh to Attend Beating Retreat at Horse Guards Parade

As part of his 95th birthday celebrations, His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh, Captain-General of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines, will attend a performance and take the salute at the Massed Bands Beating Retreat on Thursday, 26 May on London’s Horse Guards Parade. Traditionally held every two years in celebration of the birthday of their Captain-General the world-renowned Beating Retreat is a pageant of ‘military music, precision drill and colour’. First put on in the sixteenth century, the pageant and parade are seen as a piece of living history and include performances from some of the world’s finest military musicians who make up all five of the Royal Marines Bands. This year’s Beating Retreat will see the addition of a drill display from one hundred members of the Royal Marine Commandos, one of the world’s elite fighting forces.

The Corps of Royal Marines forms part of the United Kingdom Naval Service—alongside the Royal Navy—and can trace their origins to 1664. Trained for rapid deployment against a wide range of threats, with special training and expertise in amphibious warfare the Royal Marines and have close ties with international allied marine forces including the United States Marine Corps and the Netherlands Marine Corps.

Prince Philip became Captain-General of the Royal Marines in 1953, two years after formally ending his active naval career, and will celebrate his 95th birthday on Friday, 10 June.

The most recent Beating Retreat was held in 2014 in honour of The Duke of Edinburgh’s 93rd birthday and the 350th anniversary of the Royal Marines.

This year’s Beating Retreat will also be performed on Wednesday the 25th on London’s Horse Guards Parade at 18.15 (6.15pm). Tickets for both performances are still available for purchase from The Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity website ( and all proceeds from the event will go towards the charity.

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