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Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo 2011

art335 01A multi-faith reception at the Edinburgh Tattoo by the Ministry of Defence

Major General David Shaw and his wife Verity Shaw hosted a dinner at Gogar House for some of the faith representatives where, as the Hindu religious advisor to the MOD, I was invited with my wife Dr Santosh Bhanot.

It was a sumptuous dinner after which we were taken to the Edinburgh Castle for a stupendous show, followed by a reception at the castle. Bishop of Edinburgh Brian Smith, Col. Martin Newman from the Jewish Committee for HM Forces, the Hindu Chaplain to the HM Forces Shri Krishankant Attri, and the current Chaplain General Revd. Jonathan Woodhouse, Assistant Chaplain General Revd. Tony Paris and other prominent army and faith leaders, all enjoyed the Tattoo.

“Tattoo”, straight from Wikipedia, is derived from “Doe den tap toe”, or just “tap toe” (“toe” is pronounced “too”), the Dutch for “Last orders”. Translated literally, it means: “put the tap to”, or “close or turn off the tap”. The term “Tap-toe” was first encountered by the British Army when stationed in Flanders during the War of the Austrian Succession. The British adopted the practice and it became a signal, played by a regiment’s Corps of Drums or Pipes and Drums each night to tavern owners to turn off the taps of their ale kegs so that the soldiers would retire to their billeted lodgings at a reasonable hour. With the establishment of modern barracks and full Military bands later in the 18th century, the term Tattoo was used to describe not only the last duty call of the day, but also a ceremonial form of evening entertainment performed by Military musicians.

Btw the Dutch contingent put up a very humorous performance on Bicycles.



Anil Bhanot