A Brief History of The Regiment


A Royal Regiment of Foot Guards was raised at Bruges in 1656 by King Charles II

whilst he was exiled in Belgium.

Lord Wentworth and about four hundred loyal Englishmen

exiled themselves to serve the King.

 For three years they saw considerable fighting in Belgium, France and Spain, often poorly fed

ill-quartered and without pay, but their loyalty never wavered.

The King being restored to the throne on 5th May 1660, returned to England, leaving the Royal Regiment overseas.


Later, he ordered Colonel Russell to raise a further Royal Regiment for his protection

In 1662, on the sale of Dunkirk, Lord Wentworth with his Royal Regiment of Guards was t were the two Regiments brought home, and in 1665 the two Regiments were amalgamated.


At this time there were two Colonels of the Regiment; Lord Wentworth appointed 26th Aug 1660 and Colonel John Russell appointed 23rd November 1660.

Lord Wentworth died in 1665 and the King then amalgamated both Regiments into one Regiment of 24 Companies with Company Colours under Colonel Russell.


King Charles definitely laid down that the Royal Regiment of Guards should take precedence over all others; The General's Regiment or Coldstream Guards taking next place


In the July of 1815, when, due to the Regiment's actions at Waterloo

the title was changed to:

The First or Grenadier Regiment of Foot Guards


The Bearskin Cap was issued


Our Association came into being in 1919 as

"The First or Grenadier Guards Comrades Association"


Branches at Bristol, Cardiff, Derby, Manchester, Nottingham and Reading

were the first to be formed in the following years.


Bristol held its inaugural meeting at the Royal Oak Hotel, Bristol

on 21st June 1919 when about 40 Grenadiers were present.


On 22nd November 1918 the title "Guardsman" was introduced in recognition of the services of Privates of the Brigade of Guards in the 1914-1918 War.


Our Association changed its name at the 1967 AGM

held in Chelsea Barracks


"Grenadier Guards Association"


Go Here to view the correspondence

between RHQ and Her Majesty


Our Association has branches in Australia, North America and the Middle East and included in 44 branches membership totals some 12,000 members



The Regiment, now part of the Household Division was formerly the Brigade of Guards and then The Guards Division

We have taken an active part in many actions including both World Wars

and continuing to do so in other operations throughout the world.



1st Battalion
The 1st Battalion is currently
stationed in the UK.

Nijmegen Company
Nijmegen Company retains the Colours, Customs and Traditions of the 2nd Battalion. Currently stationed at Wellington Barracks, London, where they perform a public duties role taking part in major state ceremonial.

The Regimental Band
The Regimental Band continues to take part in ceremonial in London, as well as undertaking engagements around the country and abroad in support of recruiting and the Association.

The training for potential Grenadiers now takes place at the Guards Company, Army Training Regiment (ATR) Catterick, Yorkshire.

The correct title for "Battle Honours" is Honorary Distinctions. The Regiment has been awarded 74 Honorary Distinctions of which 45 are shown on the Colours of the Regiment. (Click Here)


An olde history taken from a post card

Grenadier Guards Association History

This space is devoted to recording the history of the Grenadier Guards Association or Old Comrades Association as it was known.

The detail will be added to as and when it is discovered

via copying of reports and other items from the various magazines which can be viewed here

The first Branches of the Association  were first formed c.1918 and Bristol Branch in 1919.

In 1929, there were eight branches recorded in the Household Brigade Magazine of Winter 1929-30.

However, Bristol was not included for whatever reason?

Click on the Victoria Cross to view the Regiment's Battle Honours

and Victory Cross Holders




Waterloo 200 re-enactments de-briefing

Click the Image





Page last updated: 11/09/2017