21 June 2012
Last Saturday, 16 June, over 500 young people from the Army Cadet Force (ACF), Sea Cadet Corps and Air Training Corps across Scotland descended on Inverness for a parade to mark the 86th birthday of our Patron, Her Majesty The Queen.
The cadets were drawn from as far afield as Orkney, the Western Isles, Moray, Caithness, Ross-shire and Inverness-shire. They were helped on their way by the military band of the Black Watch Battalion ACF, the pipes and drums of 1st Battalion The Highlanders ACF and pipers of the Lovat Scout cadets from Orkney.
The tri-service parade, believed to be the only one of its kind in the United Kingdom, made a colourful and impressive spectacle as the youngsters marched before many hundreds of spectators to celebrate HM The Queen's Diamond Jubilee Year, on the occasion of her 86th birthday.
The parade started at the castle and ended up at the Northern Meeting Park, where they held a Drumhead Service, the traditional way in which the Armed Forces have given thanks for many centuries, which originated on the battlefield.
The cadets formed a square and their drums were laid on the ground to form an altar, before the Standards of the three cadet forces were laid on the drums for the short service of readings and hymns.
The day's events concluded with a Beat Retreat at Cameron Barracks that evening.