The King's Escort

Thomas Garrett; By William Ward, 1837

Garrett’s Troop was at the Mote Park review in 1799 and, as the threat of a French invasion receded, they were often used to support civil authorities during rural disturbances in East Kent as there were no police.  

These duties included providing escorts for the King when he passed through East Kent and, less pleasantly, for highwaymen on their way to execution.  

In 1801 the East and West Kent regiments combined to escort the leading Irish rebel Napper Tandy to London in 1801 to stand trial for treason.  Tandy was sentenced to death but reprieved by Napoleon’s personal intervention and the Peace of Amiens, leaving to live in France.

Thomas Garrett became a Major in March 1814 and Lieutenant Colonel in February 1820.  His troop was one of four to be kept when the Regiment was reduced in size to save costs in 1826 and he stayed as commanding officer until it was stood down in 1827.  He died in 1838.