The Queen will attend the Duke of Lancaster’s Regimental Memorial Dedication at the National Memorial Arboretum on Tuesday, May 17. Her Majesty, who also uniquely bears the title of the Duke of Lancaster, is Colonel-in-Chief of the regiment.
The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment was formed in July 2006 by the combining of three single battalion regiments; the King’s Own Royal Border Regiment, the King’s Regiment and the Queen’s Lancashire Regiment. Based in the North West of England, the Regiment serves Cumbria Lancashire, Merseyside, and Greater Manchester. It has earned the nickname ‘Lions of England’ and is presently commanded by Brigadier Peter Rafferty.
The Dukedom of Lancaster has been merged with the Crown since 1399, when Henry IV became the first King of the House of Lancaster. The title of Duke continues to be used, despite Her Majesty being a female monarch. The Duchy of Lancaster is an important source of income for the Sovereign, and The Queen has visited the county numerous times during her reign.
During the Service of Dedication, The Queen will lay a wreath at a new memorial to honour the regiment’s fallen soldiers. The bronze memorial is a heraldic Lion of England, a fitting tribute to the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment. Her Majesty will unveil a commemorative plaque before going on to meet Officers of the regiment and their families.
The Service will be held at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. The Arboretum is the country’s year-round centre of Remembrance, and was established by Commander David Childs CBE. Planting began in 1997, and today the Arboretum has around 30,000 trees and more than 300 dedicated memorials to the fallen. The living memorial spans 150 acres, and is a lasting tribute to the service and sacrifice of soldiers who laid down their life for their country.