Monday, April 2, 2018


  For more than 60 years they have kept a low profile but have been a vital force in providing security for some of the world's most powerful dignitaries.

  They have protected Prime Ministers, foreign diplomats and heads of state; and whenever the Queen leaves Buckingham Palace they escort her on her journeys through London.

  They worked closely with Princess Diana and their next job will be to escort and provide security and protection for her son Prince Harry and his bride Meghan Markle when they marry at Windsor on May 19.  

  Until now the exploits and adventures of the Metropolitan Police's Special Escort Group have been largely unheralded and unpublicised.
  But a new book, Escorting the Monarch, by Chris Jagger, a former intelligence officer who worked with Britain's Special Forces, reveals  for the first time details of the SEG's work and gives a unique insight into what goes on behind-the-scenes.

    Jagger, who spent 20 years in the intelligence community, much of the time tackling organised crime in the Balkans says: "The SEG will play an important part in the security of the coming Royal Wedding and it will be a huge security operation.

  "The biggest challenge for the officers involved ---and there will be many--- is to not be seen. No one wants the wedding to be dominated by an atmosphere of security. Nonetheless, the assumption made by those in command of security will be that all measures will need to be in place. Planning is well underway.
Metropolitan Police Special Escort Group motorcycle outriders.
 "The SEG will have various roles during the wedding, one of which will be to ferry our own VIP's and Heads of State to and from the proceedings."

  His book gives a detailed account of the group's history---it was formed in 1952 to escort Yugoslav Prime Minister Marshal Tito who was believed to be in danger of an assassination attempt---and how it evolved in response to changing and ever more dangerous times.    

  As well as escorting kings, queens, presidents and emperors, the 35-man group has escorted priceless works of art, gold from the Bank of England, terrorists  and high-risk Category A prisoners.       
  "The group are unlike any other," he says. "They prefer the low-key approach, and aim for elegance rather than presence. This is for several reasons - partly due to the complexity of navigating London's traffic, partly because they firmly believe it is the safest and most secure way, but mostly because Her Majesty and Prince Philip insist on keeping a low-profile, and not disrupting the flow of London. Neither of them like the noise, fuss and aggression that comes with conventional security convoys."

  The book has a website,  and a Facebook page  


  1. "It is very good advice to believe only what an artist does, rather than what he says about his work." Re: David Hockney and his lame pro-smoking agenda. Maybe he should take his own advice and stop trying to change people's minds about smoking-a known killer. His father was very anti-smoking and Hockney claims he always "goes against the tide" - maybe his smoking is a big F.U. to his father. In one interview he says, "‘My father would always be worried about smokers, and then go and eat chocolate biscuits in the park, which killed him. He went into a coma because he was diabetic. Every time he went into a coma. He’d already had three, and then had a fourth and went into hospital and died. So, chocolate biscuits killed him. Not cigarettes, chocolate biscuits! Not that I would suggest you put on the chocolate biscuit wrappers These Might Kill, because they won’t, just as cigarettes won’t. My father had thought he was going to live to be 100.’

  2. Hockney was merely venting his anger at the holier-than-thou anti-smoking brigade. Good for him.

  3. Hockney says, "I don’t believe the second-hand smoke stuff. How can you know? It is all highly exaggerated. I speak as someone who has smoked for 58 years and I’m still here (and I’m fine, thank you)." I think that ignorant comment about sums up the level of his intellect.

  4. Nothing ignorant about that. He IS still here and fine. And also a brilliant artist.

  5. He is one person in millions/billions. "It is important to have a group of people who will participate in the survey and be able to represent the whole target population. This group is called a “sample”. Determining the right kind and number of participants in a sample group, also known as sampling, is one of the basic steps in conducting surveys." Just because he's "still here" and "fine" means nothing in terms of statistics about the risks of smoking.

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