Windsor Castle guards jailed for going to 'mini-rave' while Queen was shielding

13 Windsor Castle guards have been jailed for breaking lockdown rules while the Queen and Prince Philip were shielding inside.

The soldiers, from the Welsh Guards, broke their coronavirus bubbles to attend a drink-fuelled ‘mini-rave’ with members of the public at a riverside park.

Four of the men tested positive for cocaine and will be kicked out of the army when they have served their custodial sentences at the military’s Glasshouse prison in Colchester.

Their punishments range from 14 to 28 days in what is thought to be the largest number of soldiers ever jailed for a single crime at the same time.

16 guards attended the rave in June, with the remaining three expected to face their fate in the coming days, according to The Sun. It is understood that one of the individuals is a more senior lance sergeant.

A defence source told the Newspaper the soldiers committed ‘a serious offence’, adding: ‘They had gone to a park near the river to have a few beers and play football but things got out of hand.’

During lockdown the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were protected at the castle by a ‘HMS Bubble’. 

24 soldiers were split into two teams of 12 who worked three weeks on and then three weeks off. They had to spend a week in enforced quarantine before they returned from leave and were banned from mixing with other people, including their own families.

An army source told Mailonline that the lockdown breach did not put the Queen or Prince Philip in danger, as the soldiers ‘would have had absolutely no contact with the royals or members of the royal household’.

An Army Spokesperson said: ‘We are proud of our Armed Forces for the support they have provided the NHS in response to Covid-19, but we demand the highest standards of behaviour from all of our personnel.

‘Following a breach in social distancing by several Welsh Guardsmen an investigation was conducted and the incident has been dealt with internally.’

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