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Written by on October 31, 2022

Each morning at 9am a lone piper plays a selection of songs below the 73-year-old British monarch’s window for 15 minutes wherever they are present at one of the royal residencies.

His Majesty’s Pipe Major Paul Burns played for the first time in the Clarence House garden as the King woke up in residence on Tuesday (25.10.22).

“The position was created by Queen Victoria in 1843, and Queen Elizabeth enjoyed the special tradition following her Accession to the Throne in 1952.”

During the lifetime of Charles’ mother, the late Queen Elizabeth II, the piper would play the bagpipes at 9am for 15 minutes when she was in residency at Windsor Castle, Buckingham Palace, the Palace of Holyroodhouse or Balmoral.

The piper’s morning performance is split into two sessions of seven minutes, with one minute separating the two segments to adjust and tune the traditional Scottish instrument.

As part of the role, the Pipe Major is the only non-royal permitted to wear Balmoral tartan, and other responsibilities include meeting and greeting people at official engagements before they are presented to the monarch.

The piper is a member of the Royal Household as part of the role and travels to wherever the monarch is based at any particular time whilst maintaining quarters at Buckingham Palace in London.

Pipe Major Paul Burns played the lament ‘Sleep, Dearie, Sleep’ to mark the moment that Queen Elizabeth’s coffin left Westminster Abbey at the end of her State Funeral on 19 September before she made her final journey to St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle to be laid to rest.



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