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SSgt Dek Traylor, Sgt Donald C Todd, Sgt Jimmy Wise, Sgt Robert Weideman, Corporal Rob Kane, Cpl Tim Hammond, Corporal Nathan Tanuku, Cpl Kristian Dawson, Cpl Will Drummee, Petty Officer Joel Rouse, LPhot James Clarke, LPhot Barry Swainsbury, Sgt Neil Chapman RAF, Cpl Connor Tierney, AS1 Ryan Murray, AS1 Palmer.
Image Copyright: © MoD Crown Copyright 2023
One man, Garrison Sergeant Major Andrew 'Vern' Stokes was at the heart of the planning team to deliver the ceremonial side of the Coronation.
Vern said: “The biggest challenge is that you have so many regiments represented from the Gurkhas to the Lancers, the Royal Navy to the RAF, and each has its own methods of doing drill with different pacing and so on. We’ve got to create a parade where everyone marches to the same pace, so the timings remain spot on.”
The pace was set by the Gold State Coach which being slow moving meant that everything had be timed from the rear of the procession.
The marching pace for the procession was set at an unnatural 108 paces a minute so even for the ceremonial experts, the Guards in the Household Division, the Coronation Procession presented a technical challenge.
The beat of the bass drums mark the marching cadence and the marches chosen by the Bands throughout the procession all had this regular 108 pace beat .
Vern designed a method of uniting all 19 processional bands to strike up at the same time and maintain the constant beat, whilst playing the same bar, with bands separated by distance over a procession group length of more than a mile.
This enabled a much larger scale of service personnel on the Coronation Procession’s relatively short journey, and compressing the groups made it so visually striking.
Vern also designed a unique drill manoeuvre to reduce the width of the marching groups from a twelve abreast frontage to six abreast. This will enable the procession, which will fill the entire width of The Mall, to move smoothly through the gates of Buckingham Palace.
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