During today’s Remembrance ceremony at the Cenotaph in London a few people have asked me since to explain why various male members of the Royal Family and other uniformed participants were saluting differently and who is right and who is wrong.
The short answer is that no one was wrong. In Britain – and some other countries, there are two different types of salute. The Army and the Royal Air Force, who do not generally wear white gloves as part of the uniform will salute with the palm facing forward, as the Prince of Wales is doing in the picture below.
The Navy, who are typically found in white gloves when in their dress uniform, will salute with the palm facing down so not to show dirty palms. The Duke of Edinburgh, being a Naval man, saluted in this style earlier today.
Ladies who are not in the military but are accompanying people who are should bow their heads, as the Duchess of Cambridge did when travelling back from Westminster Abbey with her new husband after April’s Royal Wedding.
Finally, a salute should only happen when one is in military uniform.