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Army Buglers Face The Music

Among the 15 finalists, only one will win this year's Bugle Competition. Candidates are marked on their presentation, marching skills and...

As far back as the Napoleonic Wars, the earliest Riflemen used bugles rather than drums to communicate orders on the battlefield.

More than 200 years later, the Colonel Commandant’s Inspection and Bugle Competition is an annual event which takes place at the Army Training Regiment Winchester.

Candidates are marked on their presentation, marching skills and, of course, their bugling ability.

The Band and Buglers of the Rifles
This year's winner was Cpl Gareth Merchant, 3 RIFLES

The Band and Bugles of the Rifles maintains traditions dating back over 200 years, including the fast march, the use of the silver bugle and the beard.

Sgt Daniel Lewis, Bugle Major, said:

"The Colonel needed to easily identify who the Bugle Major was, as such his signaller. So (...) he could turn around, and look at the guy with the mutton chops and say 'Quick, over here, I want them to move'" 

The Bugle Platoon includes 20 infantry soldiers from the five regular Battalions that form The Rifles.

Riflemen can be posted to the Band and Bugles on completion of an 18-week Bugle Course at the Army School of Ceremonial in Catterick.

The Band and Bugles of The Rifles were formed from The Band and Bugles of The Light Division on 1st February 2007.

Watch our reporter Claire Sadler live during the competition: