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 in the Commonwealth of Nations.


Australian equerries are commissioned officers in the Australian Defence Force, appointed on an ad hoc basis to the Queen 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 Queen 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. Colonel the Hon Henry Jackman of The Governor General's Horse Guards, Canada's Household Cavalry regiment, is the equerry to Akaash Maharaj, in the latter's role as head of UNICEF Team Canada.[2]

New Zealand

New Zealand equerries are appointed to serve the Queen 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

British equerries are appointed only to senior members of the British Royal Family and are drawn only from senior officers of the British Armed Forces.

There are now[when?] three equerries to the Queen of the United Kingdom, at least one of whom is in attendance on the sovereign on a daily basis. For some years the Queen's senior equerry has also held the position of Deputy Master of the Household.

The Queen's permanent equerry is an officer of OF3-OF4 (Maj-Lt Col) rank or equivalent, recruited in turn from the three services of the British Armed Forces.[citation needed] Many previous equerries have gone on to reach higher rank.

The Queen's temporary equerry is a captain of the Coldstream Guards, who provides part-time attendance. When not required for duty, an equerry has additional regimental or staff duties. Senior members of the British Royal Family each also have one or two equerries.

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

The Royal Household also includes a number of "extra equerries" – usually retired senior officers with some connection to the Royal Household. The extra equerries are rarely if ever required for duty.

Equerries to the British monarch

Individuals who have served as equerry to the monarch of the United Kingdom include:

Years Name Regiment Notes
1874–1893 Major General Sir John Carstairs McNeill[5]
1893–1910 Captain the Hon. Sir Seymour John Fortescue Royal Navy Brother of the Hon. Sir John William Fortescue[6]
1910–1936 Captain Sir Bryan Godfrey-Faussett Royal Navy
?-1936 Lt Col John Derrick Hignett 10th Hussars
1936–1954 Captain Sir Harold Campbell, KCVO DSO Royal Navy
1944-1953 Group Captain Peter Townsend, CVO DSO DFC Bar Royal Air Force
1950–1954 Captain Viscount Althorp, MVO[7] Royal Scots Greys
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
1954–1975 Lieutenant-Colonel The Lord Plunket, KCVO Irish Guards
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[8] 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
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
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
2001–2004 Major James Duckworth-Chad, MVO Coldstream Guards
2004–2007 Commander Heber Ackland, MVO Royal Navy
2010–2012 Lieutenant Colonel Dan Rex, MVO Royal Gurkha Rifles
2012–2015 Lieutenant Commander Andrew Canale, MVO[9] 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 Major Tom White Royal Marines[10]

See also


  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. ^ Mennell, Philip (1892). "McNeill, Major-General Sir John Carstairs" . The Dictionary of Australasian Biography. London: Hutchinson & Co – via Wikisource.
  6. ^ "The Crown". Time. 27 May 1929. Archived from the original on 16 August 2009. Sir John's brother, Capt. Hon. Sir Seymour Fortescue, equerry-in-waiting to King George since 1893, author of a book of memoirs, Looking Back.
  7. ^ 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.
  8. ^ 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
  9. ^ "Court Circular: August 20 2012". The Times. 20 August 2012. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 27 April 2021.
  10. ^ 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.