A MEMBER of the guard of honour at the Queen’s visit to Corby more than half a century ago has pledged to line the streets once more when she visits this summer.
Trevor Smith, 81, recently spotted himself in an old picture of the monarch’s previous visit to the town on Monday, June 19, 1961.
At the time he was part of the 4th/5th Battalion The Northamptonshire Regiment (TA) and lined up for the Queen to take a salute in the former Market Square.
He said: “I was in the Army and we had Lee Enfield Rifles. Just before the Queen came up we were sent to a camp near Dundee as they decided we weren’t going to use those rifles, we would use the Belgian FN or SLRs.
“We didn’t have a clue how to bear arms with them so we spent a whole week up at that camp learning how to present arms for the Queen.”
Mr Smith, of Leah Close, Great Oakley, remembers the parade did not go smoothly for one of his fellow guards.
He said: “When he went to present arms he caught his medals with his rifle and pulled them off and they fell to the ground but the Regimental Sergeant Major said ‘leave them’ and stopped him from bending down to pick them up just before the Queen came. Our orders were to make sure if she stopped to speak to you, you called her Ma’am.”
Mr Smith, who appeared sixth from left in the old picture, added: “There can’t be many of us left.
“Some served in the war and they must be at least 85.”
He added that he hopes to see the Queen when she returns on June 13 or 14. He added: “I shall come down and see her wherever she goes.”