Traditional guard of Hillsborough Fort reappointed after over 100 years

An ancient ceremony dating back to King Charles II has been revived at Hillsborough Castle for the first time in over a century.

Sunday, 1st August 2021, 2:41 pm
Updated Sunday, 1st August 2021, 2:45 pm

The move comes ahead of the village being retitled ‘Royal Hillsborough’ later this year in recognition of its long standing connections to the monarchy.

Elected representatives attended the ceremony on Saturday at which bugler Andrew Carlisle, who wore a scarlet tunic, once again sounded the call to be answered by the six warders of the Hillsborough Fort Guard.

Nicholas Hill, 9th Marquess of Downshire, presented the six new warders of Hillsborough Fort with their official warrants of appointment.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The six warders are appointed to be the Hillsborough Fort Guard. Photo: STEVEN MCAULEY/MCAULEY MULTIMEDIA

DUP leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson who attended the event, said it will “safeguard this unique tradition for hopefully many years to come”.

The guard dates back to 1660 when King Charles II granted a royal charter to the fort. Saturday marked the first time in over a century that an official event to establish the warders has taken place. 

As a result, the village will now once again see Fort Warders in their navy tunics, white breeches and black bi-corn hats around the village.


Nicholas Hill, the 9th Marquess of Downshire, appointed the six wardens. Photo: STEVEN MCAULEY/MCAULEY MULTIMEDIA

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our advertisers - and consequently the revenue we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription.

Subscribe to and enjoy unlimited access to the best Northern Ireland and UK news and information online and on our app. With a digital subscription, you can read more than 5 articles, see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Visit now to sign up.

Our journalism costs money and we rely on advertising, print and digital revenues to help to support them. By supporting us, we are able to support you in providing trusted, fact-checked content for this website.