Military School Troops Colours Before Admiral of Fleet
30th July 2015

Admiral of the Fleet, The Lord Boyce, was guest of honour at the Duke of York’s Royal Military School in Dover last Friday (July 3) to take part in annual Grand Day celebrations in which pupils perform a Trooping the Colour ceremony.

Founded in 1803, the Duke of York’s Royal Military School is the only school in England to enjoy the Royal privilege of holding colours (granted in 1824 by King George IV) and marching the colours through the ranks. This only happens in infantry regiments and at its sister school, Queen Victoria School, in Dunblane, Scotland. 

The Lord Boyce was Inspecting Officer for the ceremony, in which the whole school paraded in full ceremonial uniform, accompanied by the school band. Most of the pupils have family in the armed forces and, as a personal touch, wore the cap badge of their parents’ or family member’s Service, Corps or Regiment over their hearts.



Attended by more than 1,000 parents and guests, this year’s Grand Day included a prize-giving event and barbecue lunch, an art and technology exhibition, a small display of tanks and static planes and a demonstration by the Tigers Parachute Display Team.

The Guest of Honour and Inspecting Officer, Admiral of the Fleet, The Lord Boyce, KG GCB OBE DL, told pupils and parents: “The Duke of York’s Royal Military School provides a haven of stability and security for children of forces families. Today, forces are working hard all round the world, on land, in the air, on water or under the water,  and it’s of enormous worth to serving parents to know that their family is safe and being well educated.”



In his end of year address, executive principal Chris Russell said: “This is the students’ day to celebrate, showcase and applaud outstanding achievements in all areas of school life. The unique formula of education, military and chapel fully develops character and resilience to help them as they go out into the world.”

Geoff Soar, chair of governors, thanked the staff for working so hard to ensure that each student met their potential in a safe environment. He also looked forward to the introduction of weekly boarding and a more flexible structure, while still preserving sport, military, chapel and the school’s traditions.

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The Duke of York’s Royal Military School was established 210 years ago by the then Duke of York to care for the orphans of soldiers and moved, in 1908, to its present 150 acre site in the Kent countryside. As a boarding school, it offers a high quality continuity of education and pastoral care and is popular with parents serving in the Armed Forces. Since becoming an academy in 2010 and opening its doors to all students, the school has welcomed an increasing number of students from across Kent and Sussex in all year groups.

Successful old Dukies of the School include: James Jones, former Bishop of Liverpool; Simon Daglish founder of the Walking with the Wounded Charity and Deputy Managing Director, Commercial, of ITV; and the late Maurice Colclough, England International Rugby Union player.

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