The History of the

4th and 7th Royal Tank Regiments


2018 – The Presentation of a New Standard by Her Majesty the Queen our Colonel-in-Chief


The Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Colonel Simon. Ridgway MBE asks “Your Majesty, may I have your permission to consecrate the Standard?”

The Chaplain General Consecrates the Standard.

The Queen moves forward to touch the Standard.

The RQMS moves forward to receive the Standard and re-joins the Standard Party


Major General Patterson, ever since my grandfather King George V visited trials of the early tanks at Elveden in July 1916 there has been an unbreakable connection between the Sovereign and the Royal Tank Regiment. Since the Regiment’s birth, only the Monarch has presented a New Standard and so now, a century later, I take great pleasure in presenting you with your New Standard today.Of course much has changed since 1916. Technology has evolved, and the Regiment with it. But the Regiment’s reputation for hard work and ingenuity endures. And the bond within tank crews, within squadrons and within the Regiment remains undiminished.
The Standard is the symbol of that bond between the men and women who serve in the Regiment and of your allegiance to the Sovereign and to the Nation. It bears the place-names of the Regiment’s hard-won battle honours and, in an increasingly uncertain world, it serves to remind us of the sacrifices which have been made in the past on behalf of the Nation.

I know that last year’s marking of the one hundredth anniversary of the Battle of Cambrai, where your forebears demonstrated the value of the tank on the battlefield, was an important moment in the history of the Regiment. Now, as we look forward to the challenges of the Regiment’s next one hundred years, I wish you – together with your families – the strength and fortitude to succeed in all you do, as those who have gone before you have always done.

Fear Naught.

Major General John Patterson CB

Your Majesty, it is a great privilege for the Royal Tank Regiment to receive its new Standard from you today, and to do so here in your home.

The occasion provides me the opportunity to thank you, Ma’am, for your tremendous service and continuing support as our Colonel-in-Chief, a role undertaken by the Sovereign since shortly after that first visit to Elveden by King George V.

At the beginning of your reign there were eight ‘battalions’ of the Regiment; based in Germany, Korea, Hong Kong, Egypt and Jordan. And in the intervening years we have been honoured to receive standards from Your Majesty on three previous occasions – in 1960 at Buckingham Palace, in 1985 at Sennelager, and in 2008 again at Buckingham Palace.

But since the amalgamation of 1st and 2nd Royal Tank Regiments in August 2014, there has been only a single Regiment. While we are reduced in number – and the Army now holds rather less tanks than the 378 that were available at Cambrai – we continue, collectively and as individuals, to play a critical part in our nation’s defence and in the leadership of the Royal Armoured Corps, and of the wider Army. As at Cambrai, where our predecessors fundamentally changed the nature of warfare in the industrial age, so today’s Regiment is rising to the challenge of warfare in the information age.

Last year’s centenary provided an opportunity to reflect not only on past glories and sacrifices but also on the responsibility of all members of your Regiment – serving and retired – to uphold the tremendous example of our forebears.

I have no doubt that the men and women of today’s Royal Tank Regiment are rising to that challenge and – to paraphrase General Elles on the eve of Cambrai – That Your Majesty can, in the light of past experience, leave the good name of the Regiment, with great confidence, in their hands.

After the address by Her Majesty and the reply from the Colonel Commandant the Commanding Officer ask for permission to dismiss the parade.

A final photograph is taken

These photographs, taken by Phil McCarthy ( appear by permission of Home Headquarters Royal Tank Regiment.