The Band of the Welsh Guards was formed in 1915 in the same year as the Regiment. Their first instruments were presented by the City of Cardiff, an act that enabled the band to carry out its first King’s Guard Mounting on St. David’s Day in 1916. That very evening the band gave its first concert on the stage of the London Opera House and immediately established a reputation for high musical standards.
The musicians in the band are drawn from all over the United Kingdom and are permanently based in London where they have the opportunity to enjoy a varied and challenging musical career. They can regularly be seen at the world famous ceremony of the Changing the Guard at Buckingham Palace, as well as at the Nation's many other State and Ceremonial occasions. The band has the opportunity to enjoy several diverse performance opportunities and can be seen performing regularly with the Royal Philharmonic and Hallé Orchestras in some of the most spectacular extravaganzas staged in the United Kingdom. Appearances on the BBC's ‘Songs of Praise’ and at prestigious sporting events like the Ashes, the FA Cup Final, Royal Ascot, Tour de France, Wimbledon, and the International Show Jumping Championship at Spruce Meadows Canada have taken the band’s music to a worldwide audience. The band had the honour of performing at the Rugby Union World Cup in 2015, and more recently have had the opportunity to share the stage with celebrities like Katherine Jenkins, Bryn Terfel and Shirley Bassey.
In 2018 the band has continued to feature on many state ceremonial events and public duties. The year paid particular focus to recruiting for the Corps of Army Music, with collaborations with many local music services. They welcomed their new Director of Music Major Dave Barringer MBE, who returns to the Household Division after 18 years having completed his tour with The Royal Regiment of Scotland Band. The band maintains its links with 1st Battalion the Welsh Guards, with regular visits to Wales in support of military charities and local schools. The band has been particularly privileged to support the Welsh Rugby Union, and player Sam Warburton for his testimonial year. A highlight this summer was stepping on to the field at Lords, the home of cricket as part the inter-service twenty20 tournament. To finish off a busy season the band travelled to the gate of the Peak District to headline the Buxton Tattoo.
Undoubtedly a huge privilege for the band has been participating in the Passchendaele 100 WW1 events back in 2017. The band performed for the Menin Gate ceremony, attended by TRH The King and Queen of Belgium, and later for the BBC’s special production from the Cloth Hall in Ypres’ Market Square alongside musicians from the RAF, Royal Marines, the National Youth choir of Scotland and international performers including Dame Helen Mirren and Alfie Boe. A third event at Tyne Cot Cemetery was a moving experience as the band honoured all those who lost their lives in Flanders.
The band continues to strive for musical excellence under new direction and look forward to a fruitful future, welcoming many new faces as part of initiative to increase the size of The Household Division Bands.