ADDRESS BY H.R.H. THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH TO
'THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH'S ROYAL REGIMENT'
9th June 1959
There is one emotion which is always
present whenever anything is changed. Regret at losing something old and
familiar. Even if the change is recognized to be inevitable and even when
the old is known to be bad there has always been and there always will be
a sense of regret at its passing.
The Duke of Cambridge as Commander- in-
Chief of the Army is supposed to have said on one occasion 'Gentlemen, I
am against change even if it can be proved to be for the better' However
much we may disagree, I think we all have a sneaking sympathy
for a man who admitted that his sense of regret was greater than his sense
Regret has its place in today's ceremony
because who can fail to regret the passing of two gallant regiments with
long and courageous histories ? There is, however, this consolation,
nothing can rub out their history, their triumphs and defeats, their
courage and devoted service are facts which can never be removed from the
Change may bring regret but at the same
time it is both a challenge and a stimulant. It is only a very mean spirit
which does not rise to the opportunities of change.
In forming this new Regiment every one of
you has a chance to put something more into it than loyalty and obedience
to tradition. each one of you has a chance to create new traditions and to
help constructively in building a Regiment that can live up to and indeed
surpass the standards of both its predecessors.
You have plenty to build on. Your counties
are neighbors. Both Regiments have had Royal connections. Both Regiments
saw service in China and both had a particularly close association with
the Royal Navy and the sea.
I can see no reason why the new Regiment
should not grow into a fighting unit in the very highest traditions of the
British Army and I tell you all here and now that I consider it a very
great honour to me that your name should be The Duke of Edinburgh's Royal
Regiment and that I should have the privilege of being your
Colonel-in-Chief. I am entirely confident that the honour of a proud title
is in good hands and that you will cherish these new Colours as a
reminder of your duty to the Queen and to the country.
Finally I look to the retired officers and
old Comrades to give their full and loyal support to the new Regiment
both in the critical months ahead and at all times in the future
GOOD LUCK AND BLESS YOU ALL