Colours of the Royal
Colours - The 6 principal Commands of the Royal
Navy hold a Queen's Colour. (left)
They are paraded on important
ceremonial occasions and afforded the highest degree of respect.
When a new Colour is presented by the
Sovereign - every 25 years - the old one is laid up in a Naval church.
owes a lot to the Royal Navy
Colour Royal Marine Commandos
Each of the 3 Commandos (40,42 and 45)
has a Queen's Colour in addition to its Regimental Colour.
Each is identical except for the cords
and tassels which are interwoven with silk in the colour of the
particular Commando's uniform lanyard
is a dark blue flag with a small Union Flag at
the pike head. The Colour carries similar central embellishments as the
Queen's Colour, with the exception that the cypher of George IV replaces
that of the reigning monarch and the unit numeral is below. The Royal
Cypher is at the other corners. The cords and tassels of both the
Queen's and Regimental Colour are gold interwoven with silks of the
40 Commando; Light Blue,
42 Commando; White,
45 Commando; Red.
The Royal Marines
fought at Gallipoli
Navy to Receive New Queens Colour
Her Majesty The Queen will present a new Colour to the Royal Navy at a
Fleet Assembly off Plymouth on 23 July 2003.
Planning is underway for the Colour presentation ceremony to take place
on board a Royal Navy ship in Plymouth Sound with The Hoe providing a
spectacular viewing point and back-drop to this historic event. There
will also be a Sail Past.
Commander-in-Chief Fleet, Admiral Sir Jonathon Band said: "It will
be a huge honour for the Fleet to receive the Colour from Her Majesty
and we are all very much looking forward to the event."
Colours have become the symbol of the spirit of a Service, Corps or
Regiment. Her Majesty The Queen has graciously approved the use by the
Royal Navy of Colours known as The Queens Colour, which is a double
folded silk White Ensign.
The flag measures 1.17 metres (44 inches) by 0.9 metres (36 inches) with
a crown and Royal Cypher embodied with gold and blue silk cord and gold
tassels, which are 1.07 metres (3 foot six inches) in length. This size
and design is standard for all Queens Colours presented to the Royal
Navy. Unlike the Colours of the Army, which carry battle honours and
vary in design from regiment to regiment, The Queens Colours of the
Royal Navy do not alter from Command to Command.
There have only been two previous Fleet Colour presentations. The first,
was presented by King George V in 1926 and the second, by Queen
Elizabeth in 1969. This year’s event is being meticulously planned on
behalf of the Commander-in-Chief Fleet by Flag Officer Sea Training at
The Colours are consecrated before and after service. Continuing the
custom for the old colours to be laid up after service in sacred or
public building, the old Queen Colour will be laid up, following a
special ceremony on 24 July, at the Church of St Nicholas in HMS Drake,