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2009-02-24

The Windsor Castle Royal Tattoo 2009

13th – 16th May

The Windsor Castle Royal Tattoo is a not-for-profit event designed to highlight the role of the British Armed Forces. As well as being a military musical spectacular, the Tattoo demonstrates the reality of modern day soldiering through a series of arena displays and movie footage.

The idea was conceived by Simon Brooks-Ward, the Managing Director of The Hpower Group, organisers of the Royal Windsor and London International Horse Shows.

History of the Windsor Tattoo

Mr Brooks-Ward was a Lieutenant-Colonel in the Royal Yeomanry, the oldest of the TA Yeomanry Regiments in the Royal Armoured Corp, when he led 133 soldiers in Iraq. The unit returned to the UK in May 2003, and instead of receiving a heroes welcome, they were greeted with indifference. He felt that there should be some sort of acknowledgement of the hazards and sacrifices that each individual soldier had faced.

In the autumn of 2007, the Daily Telegraph ran a series of articles highlighting the fact that the local authorities were denying soldiers a homecoming parade when they returned from Iraq and Afghanistan. The public reacted and the government urged the councils to offer a proper homecoming to returning servicemen.

This support inspired Mr Brooks-Ward to organise the first Windsor Tattoo. In addition to raising public awareness, the event aims to raise much needed funds for The Royal British Legion who provide financial support to individual soldiers and their families who have served or are serving

Military band trumpeters

on operations in war zones.

The first Windsor Castle Royal Tattoo attracted over 18,000 spectators. Simon Brooks-Ward was understandably delighted, “The first Windsor Castle Royal Tattoo was a real success and we have every confidence that 2009 will be even bigger and better. In response to public demand we’ve added an extra night’s performance this year and have increased the arenas seating capacity to over 7000, so that more people can enjoy the show.”

This Year’s Events

The Tattoo tells the story of modern life in each of the services and large screens will show footage from each of them in action in war zones, giving the audience an insight into modern military life.

Of course, you can’t have a Royal Tattoo without music and the 2009 Windsor Tattoo will feature at least 500 military musicians and 250 horses. Military bands from all the services will be present and this year Windsor welcomes the Danish Guard Hussars Mounted Squadron, the first international act to perform at the event.

Brigadier Melville Jameson, Producer of the Windsor Castle Royal Tattoo and former producer of the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, said: “This year’s programme is looking really exciting with a stunning line-up of talent.  For the Finale, the vast Combined Massed Bands will be joined by the Massed Pipes and Drums to create a splendid vision and incredible sound, which coupled with the rest of the strong cast, will make it a night to remember.”

The Windsor Tattoo presentations begin at 20:30 and tickets for the event range from £15 – £60 and can be booked online at http://www.windsortattoo.com/ or by calling 0871 230 5570.

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