Lieutenant – Colonel SPEERS, Officers,
Warrant Officers, Non Commissioned Officers and men of the first Battalion
The Royal Berkshire Regiment
I am very glad to give you your new
colours here at Windsor Castle, the traditional stronghold of your County,
and I congratulate you all on your drill and smartness
In times past the colours served a very
real and practical purpose in war. Borne into battle they became a point
around which the battalion would rally, and by their presence on the field
were an inspiration to all to fight with heroism and self-sacrifice. I do
not suppose that this purpose was ever more gloriously served than when your
2nd battalion fought and died to the last man around the colours
Although they are no longer carried into
battle, colours still play an outstanding part in the life of a battalion.
They are the outward sign of its pride in past achievements and its
endeavours and ideals for the future, they are the symbol of all that is
finest in its tradition
For you this tradition goes back for
more than two hundred years during which your regiment has served sovereign
and country in many parts of the world, Into your history is woven an
honourable record of courage and endurance.
These are the qualities which have
always made good soldiers. They were established in your regiment long ago
and have been handed down to you by many generations of Royal Berkshiremen.
They were displayed in full measure during the Second World War as the new
battle honours emblazoned on these colours bear witness. I know that there
are present today many men who helped to gain these honours and I am sire
that they must be proud that the services they rendered to their country
have been suitably recorded in the history of their regiment.
Modern weapons and new methods have
altered the manner in which a soldier fights, but not the nature of the
spirit which mist inspire him. This remains as it has always been, his
strongest weapon, the one indispensable article of his equipment, and his
only sure support in adversity
In committing these colours to your
charge, I do so confident that you will guard them well and that you will
always be faithful, in peace, and if need be in war, to the spirit and
tradition which they enshrine.
21st July 1956