Sloane Street, synonymous with cutting-edge style and home to a host of international fashion designers, is also steeped in British heritage. Set against the glittering shop windows of one of the world’s most luxurious streets, the regular presence of the Household Cavalry is a hallmark of this unique positioning.
Made up of the two most senior Regiments in the British Army – the Life Guards and The Blues and Royals, the Household Cavalry is divided between the Armoured Regiment stationed at Combermere Barracks in Windsor and the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, garrisoned at Knightsbridge Barracks, at the northern tip of Sloane Street.
Sloane Street is no stranger to international royalty and dignitaries and the proximity of the Household Cavalry further underscores the luxury street’s royal credentials. Reinforcing its importance, Prince William and Prince Harry are members of the Blues and Royals regiment.
The Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment carries out ceremonial duties on State and Royal Occasions, such as the provision of a Sovereign’s Escort at the Trooping of the Colour. Other royal commitments include providing Sovereign Escorts for Her Majesty The Queen during State Visits and as required by Her Majesty anywhere in the United Kingdom.
With luxury fashion repeatedly drawing inspiration from the equestrian world, Sloane Street offers a unique juxtaposition of traditional British equestrian uniforms showcased against a catwalk of brands offering a modern, couture alternative. Fashion houses, including Prada, Gucci, Moncler and Hermes are known for regularly featuring equestrian themed pieces and horse motifs in their collections and window displays.
In contrast to this continual reinvention of equestrian attire, the Household Cavalry’s polished cuirasses, or breastplates, have been worn since the coronation of King George IV in 1821 and they are the only soldiers left in the British Army who wear ceremonial armour.
Interestingly, each member of the Household Cavalry has a uniform ‘made to measure’ by Firmin House, a clothier established in 1655. With this in mind, it seems fitting that the present ‘made to measure’ trend, is well showcased on Sloane Street with fashion houses such as Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Ermenegildo Zegna reinstating this traditional service at the forefront of 2013 campaigns.
The close association and interesting juxtaposition between the Household Cavalry and Sloane Street, reinforced through both royal and couture connections, accentuates the street’s visible aristocratic heritage. Encapsulating the traditional and the fashion-forward like no other street in the Capital, Sloane Street is the place to see and be seen in London.