Light Cavalry HAC
The Light Cavalry HAC originally was formed in 1861 as part of the Honourable Artillery Company a volunteer military unit associated with the City of London. Amongst their then duties was that of guarding the Lord Mayor of London, a role now carried out by the Company of Pikemen and Musketeers of the Honourable Artillery Company. In 1891 the HAC Light Cavalry was disbanded and absorbed into the rapidly expanding horse artillery element of the Regiment, eventually becoming part of 'A' Battery HAC.
In 1979 the Light Cavalry was reformed, as a civilian organisation, chiefly due to the enthusiasm of Major Gerald Flint-Shipman, an officer in the Territorial Army Royal Green Jackets and non-regimental member of the HAC, who became its first commander. Membership of the light cavalry is open to both Regimental and Non-Regimental Members of the HAC and those wishing to join may be proposed for membership on that basis if they have previous military service elsewhere.
In April 2004, as the celebration of twenty five years since reforming, the Captain General of the Honourable Artillery Company, Queen Elizabeth II, was pleased to inspect the HAC Light Cavalry in Review, at Windsor, and afterwards presented a Royal Warrant enacting their rights and responsibilities. This includes the right to wear badges of qualification and achievement, but not rank, earned in Her Majesty's service.
They escort the Lady Mayoress, providing her ‘Travelling Escort’ at the Lord Mayor's Show. A dismounted ‘Carpet Guard’ lines the entrance to the Royal Courts of Justice to ‘protect’ the Lord Mayor’s coach whilst the Pikemen are otherwise engaged inside on the same occasion. The Light Cavalry also supply mounted and dismounted guards at polo matches held at Smith’s Lawn Windsor during the summer months. Members of the HAC Light Cavalry take part in a variety of equestrian competitive activities, either as individuals, or as team members. There is a Cross-country equestrianism team, The Slashing Sabres, and teams that enter Skill at Arms, sword, lance and revolver, tent pegging, eventing and show jumping competitions.
- "HAC Members". HAC Website. "There are two broad classes of memberships available in the HAC, Regimental and Non- Regimental. Regimental Members are either TA soldiers in the Active Unit of the HAC or Veteran members who have ended their active soldiering but still enjoy the many benefits of belonging to this unique organisation. Non-Regimental members will have served for at least 2 years in Regular or 3 years in Volunteer units of any of the British Armed Services. They must be proposed and seconded by Regimental members."
- "HAC Journal Article, Spring 2006". Light Cavalry HAC Website. "If you are not yet a member of the Company, but have previous military service elsewhere, we look at you for about six months, and then, if suitable, make recommendations to the Court to the effect that the candidate is suitable for Non Regimental Membership of the Company, and then you can also join the Light Cavalry."
- "Court Circular". Windsor Castle. 20 April 2004. Retrieved 2007-12-28. "The Queen this morning visited the Light Cavalry of the Honourable Artillery Company in Windsor Great Park and was received by General Sir Timothy Granville-Chapman (Colonel Commandant). Her Majesty subsequently took the Royal Salute and granted a Royal Warrant to the Light Cavalry."