King Charles will participate in his first Trooping the Colour ceremony, which has marked the British sovereign’s official birthday for over 260 years, as monarch on June 17, Buckingham Palace said Thursday.
Charles, 74, took over as sovereign in September following the death of his mother Queen Elizabeth II.
“This impressive display of pageantry will take place on Saturday 17th June… with His Majesty The King attending and taking the salute,” the palace said in a statement.
British sovereigns celebrate their birthdays twice: privately on the actual day — November 14 in the case of Charles — and then at an official ceremony in June, following an age-old tradition to try and escape the whims of the weather.
The ceremony will include more than 1,400 parading soldiers, 200 horses and 400 musicians.
The birthday parade begins at the monarch’s official London Buckingham Palace residence and will end with a Royal Air Force fly-past, which Charles and close family members will watch from the palace balcony.
The ceremony has its origins in the preparations for war, where all the flags were shown to the soldiers so that they would recognise them in the confusion of battle.
The 2023 parade will take place a little over a month after Charles’ coronation ceremony, on May 6.