Saluting at Remembrance Parade

At our CCF we normally do the last post/silence/reveille/National Anthem in Chapel, hence no headdress, so this hasn’t come up before and we don’t have a tradition here. There seems to be considerable disagreement about saluting especially during the silence. I’ve ended up issuing direction as follows but I wondered what more experienced people on here thought (given a lot of you are at outdoor parades every year):

Officers ONLY should:

Salute from first to last note of Last Post; then stand at attention
Salute from first to last word of National Anthem

Others say you should hold the salute during the silence and come down at start of reveille; and not salute during the NA.

Thoughts? I’m not changing the direction I’ve issued now (it was based on an IBN from 11 Inf Bde so it does have some authority!)

(sorry slightly unclear: edited to add this year we are doing all that outside)

I’ve always saluted from the first to the last note of the Last Post and then come down out of the salute, remaining at attention for the silence and subsequent national anthem.

Of course, headdress in donned immediately prior to the last post and remains in situ throughout the national anthem.

Well I am going to put in a curve ball…

The parade admin orders for our parade from the army who organises it states you DO NOT salute.

Their reasoning is
The national anthem during rememberance parade constitutes a hymn and therefore you do not salute

Funnily enough I was wreath laying last year with a SI who happened to be the ceremonial officer for a very large, long in existence, military training establishment (won’t mention which one as it’ll immediately give away who / where it was).
He politely advised all of the wreath party NOT to salute during the last post at the 11am Remembrance Service as the Queen does it on behalf of the nation at this time.
Apparently that is the same as they are now advising their officers at said establishment.

First I’d heard of it, but I didn’t want to be the only one saluting ! And he was senior to me anyway !

If you come to our parade you’ll see officers from all services trying to copy someone they consider in the know.

Last year I saluted from last post to first note of reveille, including silence. I saluted during the national anthem too.

AP818 says “the general rule is officers and WOs are to salute when the last post is played but not during reveille with ORs standing to attention throughout.” (Conveniently missing the silence).

Under funeral ceremonial it says all officers at the graveside salute for the duration of the last post, silence and reveille.

For the national anthem it says that if it is played “formally”, and you’re on parade in an organised party, officers and WOs are to salute.

I’ll be saluting during the last post and during the silence right up until the fast part of reveille.

Same as the banners do with the dipping when you think about it.

1 Like

What about the Last Post though?

Prior to the last post the parade commander brings the parade to a general salute with the guard of honour presenting arms. Once the last post finishes the parade commander gives the command to slope arms and then we stop Saluting and the national anthem is then played.

This isn’t a wee parade out in the countryside this is in a major city. To me it felt totally alien not to salute at the national anthem.

The banners are also not dipped during the national anthem.

We asked the WXo for their input and he said the Army was correct…

Just a point to add… in 818 the paragraph for saluting during last post tells you to follow local custom regarding saluting but provides guidance of officers and WOs saluting. So an RBL parade follow their directive

When on parade only officers and WOs are to salute for national anthem, other stand to attention.

Banner…during the national anthem a royal salute should be carried out… however given we parade in non parade square sized environments a standard dip may suffice…thats in my opinion anyways.

Don’t forget; there’s no such thing.

The only way to lower a Queen’s Colour, Squadron Standard, Air Cadet Banner, is the Royal Salute.

No other drill movement exists.

(AP818, AP3327, QRJ152, QR164 refer)


1 Like

just for completeness Remembrance Parade is NOT an RBL Parade.

Remembrance is a civic parade and is organised by the civic authorities (council) but it may delegate the parade duties to the RBL - this does not make it an RBL Parade

I am aware of that just everyones seem to of adopted it with the same timings as the royal salute…even at competition level

1 Like


That needs to stop!

Unfortunatley i dont think banner training is fully established within the corps…there is definitley a skill gap among most staff to train cadets so fhey rely on organisations like the RBL to teach which createa horrible habbits that are hard to work through.

compare the books and AP818 and the RBL Ceremonial Handbook are different on the subject of dipping a standard

I agree, I wonder… (brain working…)

Yeah, that can’t stop as the RAF does not cater for the various circumstances that ATC banners will find themselves in. In particular, it is impractical to perform a Royal Salute when standing shoulder-to-shoulder with various colour bearers at a ceremony, especially when everybody else is doing something different

The ATC has adopted the Dip and includes it in the standard banner party competition run at all levels each year.

The status of a normal ATC banner is also somewhat different than the RAF colours and standards for which AP818 was written, so the variance for our own use should not really cause any disturbances in the force.

I agree to a point, ATC Banners are specifically mentioned in the references above.

But there needs to be some flexibility in parades, especially in the remembrance season! I know, I’ve been spitting feathers these last few days!!

However, non standard drill movements shouldn’t be used anywhere else apart from these exceptional circumstances.

ATC Banners are held in similar regard to colours and standards and should be treated similarly.

How do you define a standard drill movement? Is it one that confirms to AP818?
( < cough> paces left/right < /cough> )