Thirteen soldiers who guard Windsor Castle and protect the Queen have been jailed for breaking lockdown rules.

They were among a group of 16 guardsmen who attended a booze and cocaine-fuelled "mini-rave" at a riverside park.

They partied with members of the public which meant they had broken a "bubble" put in place as the Queen and Prince Philip were shielding inside.

The first 13 troops from the Welsh Guards were sentenced last week.


Their punishments ranged from 14 to 28 days at the military's Glasshouse prison in Colchester.

It's thought to be the largest number of troops jailed for a single crime at the same time.

Four of the men also tested positive for cocaine and will be kicked out of the British army after serving their sentences.

The guardsmen were based at Combermere Barracks in Windsor.

The party took place in late June, less than two weeks after the Queen attended a socially distanced Trooping the Colour – the first time the ceremony had taken place at Windsor since 1895.

During lockdown the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were protected at the castle by what became known as the "HMS Bubble".

Several guards will spend time in jail for a lockdown breach. Photo / AP
Several guards will spend time in jail for a lockdown breach. Photo / AP

At the height of the pandemic, her 24 servants were split into two teams of 12 who worked three weeks on and then three weeks off.

They also had to spend a week in quarantine before they got back from leave.


The guardsman were treated as a single household and under the rules they were banned from mixing with other people.

They could not even meet their families to make sure the royals were protected. But at the party they broke the rules by mixing with locals, sources said.

An army source added: "There was never any danger to the Queen and Prince Philip. They would have had absolutely no contact with the royals or members of the royal household."

The other three guardsmen, including a more senior lance sergeant, will be told of their punishment in the coming days.