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Alan “Perry” Mason (London's Garrison Sergeant Major, 1987-2002)

Veteran of the Regiment
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: November 2nd, 2003, 1:04 am

November 28th, 2017, 4:55 pm #1

From The Daily Telegraph 28 November.

Alan “Perry” Mason, who has died aged 70 was a Coldstream Guards Warrant Officer who in June 1987 became Garrison Sergeant Major of London District, a post he held for 15 years.

Alan George Mason was born in County Durham on April 24 1947, and enlisted into the Army in May 1962 aged only 15. He joined the Coldstream Guards as a junior guardsman and did his basic training at Pirbright, becoming a junior drum major.

In 1965 he joined the 2nd Battalion Coldstream Guards and went to Aden.

In 1976 he was a WO2 and returned to Pirbright before spending three years in Germany with 1st Coldstream. On being promoted to WO1 he became Regimental Sergeant Major and went with the battalion to Hong Kong.

He also served in Malta, Canada and the Falklands as well as Northern Ireland. He even went to Zimbabwe and South Yemen.

But it was as Garrison Sergeant Major London District that he became best known.

In this capacity he was closely involved in all state and ceremonial occasions as well as national events in London and elsewhere. These included the unveiling by the Queen of the memorial to Field Marshal Slim in 1993, the annual Queen’s Birthday Parade including Trooping the Colour, the Festival of Remembrance and various Guards of Honour.

Mason had been in the post for only three years when in 1991 he was appointed MBE. In 2000 he was appointed MVO in the Queen Mother’s 100th Birthday Honours; two years later he would take charge of her Lying in State and funeral.

The same year Mason was in charge of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebration at Buckingham Palace, which marked the first time that all the ceremonial Royal bodyguards had paraded together. This included the Military Knights of Windsor and the Chelsea Pensioners who had been presented by the Queen with a Royal Mace.

During the parade, Garrison Sergeant Major Mason, wearing his MVO and MBE, his Bearskin adding height to his 6 ft 6 in, marched past the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh alone, with pace stick under his arm, the band playing Auld Lang Syne as he saluted smartly to his right.
Full obituary with photographs.