'Joy to watch' Queen gifted 'surprise' present from Army as video sparks royal delight

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The seven animals came from across the UK to Edinburgh Castle for the photo, which was presented to the monarch earlier this month. The three ponies, two dogs, ram and goat look smart in the picture alongside their handlers.

A video showing the mascots coming together for the photo was shared by the Army.

Speaking in the clip, Pony Major Mark Wilkinson, handler of Shetland pony Corporal Cruachan IV, of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, revealed how the idea came about.

He said: “So we thought how could we celebrate Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee?

“We came up with the brainwave of having all of Her Majesty’s Army mascots here in Edinburgh, get a nice photograph taken that we could get framed and present to Her Majesty.

“And I’m sure as an animal lover that she will throughly enjoy the photograph.”

The Army’s animal mascots include Lance Corporal Emrys Forlan Jones, Welsh mountain pony mascot of 1st Queen’s Dragoon Guards, and Lance Corporal Pegasus V, Shetland pony mascot of the Parachute Regiment.

There are two Irish Wolfhounds – Turlough Mor, aka Seamus, of the Irish Guards and Brian Boru X of the Royal Irish Regiment.

Private Derby XXXII is the Regimental ram of the Mercian Regiment.

And Lance Corporal Shenkin IV is the Regimental goat of the 3rd Battalion The Royal Welsh.

Tweeting the clip, the Army said the photo was a “surprise present” for the Queen.

It comes after she celebrated her historic Platinum Jubilee milestone of 70 years on the throne this year.

The video prompted a delighted reaction from other Twitter users.

One, Amanda Meehan, commented: “I’d bet The Boss gives this one pride of place. Nice work.”

Another, Sarah Delore, wrote: “Loved every second of this – thank you!!”

A third, Krista Salo, said: “The tradition of the Regimental Mascots is wonderful. Thank you for this delightful video!”

Another with the handle @pippajacks added: “This is superb.”

A fifth, @star9debo, wrote: “This is just brilliant! What a great thing to do.”

Another, Carolyn Simms, commented: “Fantastic! Who wouldn’t want to be a mascot handler?!”

One more, @faith_required, said: “What a joy that was to watch.”

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