Norfolk-born major takes part in 41-gun salute

Major Mark Edward, CO of The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery

Major Mark Edward, CO of The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery - Credit: Archant

A Norfolk-born army major watched in pride as his troops carried out a ceremonial 41-gun salute in honour of the new addition to the Royal Family.

The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery, wearing full dress uniform, rode past Buckingham Palace to Green Park, with 71 horses pulling six First World War-era 13-pounder field guns into position for the traditional salute.

Their commanding officer is Major Mark Edward, who grew up in Necton, near Swaffham, and is now in charge of the historic mounted unit, responsible for firing Royal Salutes on Royal Anniversaries and State Occasions.

'It all went really well, we were really pleased,' he said.

'The commanding officer doesn't get to make the order now – it is a troop captain – so I was watching from the sidelines.

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'It was a huge honour though, to be asked to be part of the celebrations.

'The salute is 41 guns because there are 21 for the Royal Salute and a further 20 for the Green Park base as it is a Royal saluting base.

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'I'm not sure if the couple would have heard it from St Mary's Paddington but there were several thousand people who came out to see it, many more than we expected from previous salutes.

'We felt that there was a huge amount of joy and enthusiasm about the whole event – it was history in the making, the birth of a future monarch.'

Next week Major Edward returns to Norfolk at the head of two Sections of The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery as they prepare to perform their spectacular Musical Drive at Holkham Country Fair.

'We are excited to be back in Norfolk this weekend for the Holkham Country Fair,' he said. 'I am particularly delighted to be coming back to my home county and a number of the soldiers are also from Norfolk.

'It has been a very busy week, but a great week as well.'

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