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Sunday, June 17, 2007

Red and Black Beafeater Uniform

Someone asked me what the purpose of the red Beafeater, Yeoman Warder, uniforms is as opposed to the black uniform. They also wondered why Beafeaters carry an axe and what their duties are.

The red ceremonial uniform is reserved for special/official occasions and the black undress uniform is the everyday version.

The Yeoman Warders carry a pike, a long spear, the Chief Warder carries a staff topped with a silver model of the white tower, and the Yeoman Gaoler carries a ceremonial battle axe. The weapons are traditional but probably effective if need be, but they also carry handguns. The Foot Guards, with their bearskin hats, provide the serious firepower in the form of SA80 machine guns.

The Beafeaters used to guard the prison, i.e. the Tower of London, but now mostly act as guides and care for the ravens.

The Tower of London is certainly a fascinating step back into history and well worth a visit.

If you have any comments please let me know and if you have any other questions which you'd like me to answer for free please send them to Ben Dash at


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