A Buckingham Palace guard may face three weeks in prison and a £1000 fine for pirouetting whilst on parade. A video in which the guard displays his nifty moves was uploaded to YouTube last month and went viral, with over 1.8 million people enjoying his routine. But UK Army bosses were not amused.
The Grenadier Guardsman will have to endure hours of marching practice and physical fitness tests in a military prison in Colchester, Essex, during which time he will forfeit all pay, estimated to be around £1000, if his Army supereriors decide to formally discipline him.
A source told the Mail on Sunday: “There’s no charge in the disciplinary manuals for silly walks and dancing on parade because nobody in living memory has had the cheek to do it.
“But this guardsman’s senior officers were livid when they saw the footage. His conduct is contrary to everything being a guardsman is about.
“He is facing a stint in the jail with no pay and, when he returns to the Grenadiers, he could lose privileges such as going out in London with the other lads in his company. Twenty-one days has been discussed as a prison sentence. The hierarchy want to put a marker down so no guardsman dares prance around outside Buckingham Palace again.”
The source confirmed that the Army heirarchy is taking legal advice before a disciplinary hearing with the soldier is convened. The soldier, who has been dubbed “Private Dancer”, is stationed at Wellington Baracks, close to Buckingham Palace in central London.
The Queen is understood to have been away when the soldier performed his routine. The Guards are famed for standing stock still in their guardsmans’ boxes, no matter what the tourists do to provoke a nod or a smile. But instead this guard decided to spin repeatedly whilst walking up and down, stop with his foot raised in mid air for several seconds, and brush dust off his rifle before leaning sideways.
Under the Armed Forces Act 2006, a soldier may receive a custodial sentence for ‘conduct prejudicial to good order and Service discipline’. “We are aware of the video,” said a Ministry of Defence spokesman. “Anyone who is found to fall short of the Army’s high standards can expect to face appropriate action.”