From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

An equerry (/ɪˈkwɛri, ˈɛkwəri/; from French écurie 'stable', and related to écuyer 'squire') is an officer of honour. Historically, it was a senior attendant with responsibilities for the horses of a person of rank. In contemporary use, it is a personal attendant, usually upon a sovereign, a member of a royal family, or a national representative. The role is equivalent to an aide-de-camp, but the term is now prevalent only among some members of the Commonwealth of Nations.


Australian equerries are commissioned officers in the Australian Defence Force, appointed on an ad hoc basis to the King of Australia, Governor General, state governors or to visiting foreign heads of state.[1]


Canadian equerries are drawn from the commissioned officers of the Canadian Armed Forces, and are most frequently appointed to serve visiting members of the Canadian Royal Family. The equerry appointed for the King of Canada is a senior officer, typically a major or a lieutenant-commander, while the equerry appointed for a child of the monarch is a junior officer, typically a captain or naval lieutenant.

Canadian equerries are also sometimes appointed to serve national representatives of the country. In 2007 Hal Jackman (former lieutenant governor of Ontario) was the equerry to Akaash Maharaj, in the latter's role as head of Canada's tent pegging team.[2]

New Zealand[edit]

New Zealand equerries are appointed to serve the King of New Zealand only for the duration of a royal visit to the country, and are always drawn from the officers of the New Zealand Defence Force, typically captains, flight lieutenants, and navy lieutenants.

Squadron Leader Leanne Woon of the Operational Support Squadron, part of the Royal New Zealand Air Force, was the equerry to the Queen of New Zealand during the most recent royal visit in 2002. She is the only woman to serve as an equerry to the monarch anywhere in the Commonwealth.[3] Captain Sam Stevenson of the New Zealand Army served as equerry to the Duke of Cambridge during his 2005 visit to New Zealand.[4] Squadron Leader Marcel 'Shagga' Scott of the Royal New Zealand Air Force served as equerry to HRH Prince Charles in November 2012. Squadron Leader Tim Costley of the Royal New Zealand Air Force served as equerry to the Duke of Cambridge during the 2014 Royal visit to New Zealand by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince George.

United Kingdom[edit]

Three mounted equerries in waiting at the Queen's Birthday Parade in 2018: Colonel Toby Browne (the Crown Equerry), Lieutenant Colonel Michael Vernon (an Extra Equerry), Major Nana Twumasi-Ankrah (Equerry in waiting).[5]

In the UK equerries are appointed by working members of the Royal family and are drawn from senior officers of the British Armed Forces. The role involves being in regular close attendance both within the royal residence and outside on public engagements.[6]

The Royal Household also includes a number of "extra equerries" – honorary appointees drawn from among the current and retired senior officers of the Royal Household. They are comparatively rarely required for duty, but their attendance can be called upon if needed.

The Crown Equerry is in charge of the Royal Mews Department and holds a distinct office.

Equerries, Temporary Equerries and Extra Equerries are entitled to wear aiguillettes as part of their uniform, and to wear the appropriate royal cypher below their badges of rank on the shoulder board (or equivalent).[7] Army officers serving as equerries or extra equerries may wear a distinctive cocked hat (with red and white upright feathers) when on duty in full dress uniform.


At the time of his accession to the throne, the household of Charles III included at least two equerries.[8]

Individuals who have served as Equerry to the King include:

Years Name Regiment Notes
2022– Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan "Jonny" Thompson Royal Regiment of Scotland

Those appointed as Extra Equerries by King Charles III (since the year 2022) include:

Other working members of the Royal Family can also appoint Equerries; in the case of more junior members the appointment might be combined with another post.[6] Like the monarch, they may also appoint Extra Equerries.


Pallbearers at the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II in 2022: Lt-Col Richards (bottom left), senior Equerry since 1999, escorted the coffin on the right-hand side, followed by five former Equerries and an Extra Equerry; out of shot, the junior Equerry led a parallel group on the left-hand side.

For most of her reign Queen Elizabeth II maintained an establishment of two Equerries plus a Temporary Equerry: the senior Equerry was a permanent appointment (joined to the position of Deputy Master of the Household); whereas the junior Equerry (who routinely held office for three years) was appointed in turn from each of the three services of the British Armed Forces.[6] The Temporary Equerry was a captain of the Coldstream Guards, who provided part-time attendance, and who (when not required for duty) was assigned to regimental or staff duties.

On overseas tours to Commonwealth realms an equerry was often appointed from the local armed forces to serve for the duration of the tour.[6]

At her funeral, the late Queen's senior Equerry and junior Equerry, ten past Equerries and two Extra Equerries marched together as pallbearers (following a custom established by Queen Victoria);[9] in this role (which is separate from that of the bearer party which carried the coffin) they walked immediately alongside the late Queen's coffin in each of the State funeral processions which took place in London and Windsor.[8]

Individuals who served as equerry to Elizabeth II include:

Years Name Regiment Notes
1952–1954 Captain Sir Harold Campbell, KCVO DSO[10] Royal Navy
1952-1953 Major Sir Michael Adeane, KCVO CB[10] Coldstream Guards
1952-1953 Group Captain Peter Townsend, CVO DSO DFC Bar[10] Royal Air Force
1952–1954 Captain Viscount Althorp, MVO[11] Royal Scots Greys
1952–1975 Lieutenant-Colonel The Lord Plunket, KCVO[10] Irish Guards also Deputy Master of the Household (from 1954)
1952–1953 Wing Commander Peter Horsley, AFC Royal Air Force
1953 Major Sepala Attygalle 1st Queen's Dragoon Guards
1954–1957 Lieutenant-Commander David Loram, LVO Royal Navy
1956–1959 Captain Richard Vickers, LVO Royal Tank Regiment Temporary
c. 1959 Lieutenant-Commander P C D Campbell Royal Navy
1958–1963 Squadron Leader Henton Sylvester Carver, CBE LVO[12] Royal Air Force Temporary
c. 1964 Squadron Leader M J P Walmsley Royal Air Force
1962-1965 Lieutenant-Commander John Garnier, LVO Royal Navy Temporary
1965–1968 Major Charles Howard, LVO 1st Queen's Dragoon Guards
1968–1971 Lieutenant-Commander Jock Slater, LVO Royal Navy
1971–1974 Squadron Leader Peter Beer, LVO Royal Air Force
1974–1977 Major G R S Broke, MVO Royal Artillery
1976–1994 Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Blair Stewart-Wilson, KCVO Scots Guards also Deputy Master of the Household
1977–1980 Lieutenant-Commander Robert Guy, MVO Royal Navy
1980–1983 Squadron Leader Adam Wise, LVO MBE Royal Air Force
1983–1986 Major Hugh Lindsay, LVO 9th/12th Royal Lancers
1986–1989 Lieutenant-Commander Sir Timothy Laurence, KCVO Royal Navy
1989–1992 Squadron Leader David Walker, OBE MVO Royal Air Force
1992–1995 Major James Patrick, MVO Irish Guards
1994–1999 Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Guy Acland, Bt LVO Royal Artillery also Deputy Master of the Household
1995–1998 Lieutenant-Commander Toby Williamson, MVO Royal Navy
1998–2001 Squadron Leader Simon Brailsford, MVO Royal Air Force
1999–present Lieutenant-Colonel Anthony Charles Richards, CVO Welsh Guards also Deputy Master of the Household
2001–2004 Major James Duckworth-Chad, MVO Coldstream Guards
2004–2007 Commander Heber Ackland, MVO Royal Navy
2007–2010 Wing Commander Andrew Calame, MVO MBE Royal Air Force
2010–2012 Lieutenant Colonel Dan Rex, MVO Royal Gurkha Rifles
2012–2015 Lieutenant Commander Andrew Canale, MVO[13] Royal Navy
2015–2017 Wing Commander Samuel P. Fletcher, MVO Royal Air Force
2017–2020 Lieutenant-Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, MVO Blues and Royals
2020-2022 Lieutenant-Colonel Tom White MVO Royal Marines[14]

Those appointed by Elizabeth II as Extra Equerries (since the year 2000) included:

Senior courtiers often continued as Extra Equerries (or could be appointed to the position) after retirement; as such, they were sometimes called upon to represent the Queen e.g. at funerals or memorial services for former colleagues.[5]

Other senior royals generally followed the Queen's pattern of appointing an equerry from one of the three armed services, in rotation; and of appointing a Temporary Equerry, often from a regiment with which they had personal links: e.g. the Duke of Edinburgh used to appoint a Temporary Equerry from the Grenadier Guards, the Queen Mother one from the Irish Guards, the Prince of Wales one from the Welsh Guards.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ PACMAN Archived 12 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine, Chapter 10, Part 3, Australian Defence Force, retrieved 20 February 2012
  2. ^ "He Lives by the Sword", Globe and Mail, 17 February 2007
  3. ^ "Transsexual MP greets the Queen as she lands in New Zealand" Archived 17 August 2004 at the Wayback Machine, The Daily Telegraph, 22 February 2002
  4. ^ "NZ envoy among diplomatic guests". NZ Herald. 24 April 2011. Retrieved 27 April 2021.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z "Court Circular". The Royal Family.
  6. ^ a b c d e Allison, Ronald; Riddell, Sarah, eds. (1991). The Royal Encyclopedia. London: Macmillan. p. 176.
  7. ^ Army Dress Regulations, Part 10
  8. ^ a b "Queen's funeral: Full guide to the gun carriage and the main procession". BBC News. 19 September 2022. Retrieved 20 September 2022.
  9. ^ Bland, Olivia (1986). The Royal Way of Death. London: Constable.
  10. ^ a b c d "Page 4198 | Supplement 39616, 1 August 1952 | London Gazette | The Gazette". www.thegazette.co.uk.
  11. ^ Royal Household of Buckingham Palace. "Diana, Princess of Wales biography". Royal.gov.uk, the official website of the British Monarchy. Archived from the original on 25 May 2014. Earl Spencer was Equerry to George VI from 1950 to 1952, and to The Queen from 1952 to 1954.
  12. ^ Jever Steam Laundry. "Air Commodore Henten Sylvester (Tony) Carver CBE, LVO". www.rafjever.org, Jever Steam Laundry promotes the irreverent camaraderie that epitomised No 122 Wing at RAF Jever. Tony was then OC DFCS as Sqn Ldr until November 1958 when he was selected for a long tour as Equerry to HM The Queen
  13. ^ "Court Circular: August 20 2012". The Times. 20 August 2012. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 27 April 2021.
  14. ^ Nikkhah, Roya (Royal Correspondent) (15 November 2020). "Royal Marines buoyed to see officer land in palace as Queen's equerry". The Times. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 27 April 2021.
  15. ^ The Navy Directory 2019 (PDF). London: Ministry of Defence. 2020. p. 2.