Last Monday, the King’s Own Band Club façade was lit up in hues of blue for the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II, while the society's flag flew at half-mast.

The royal connection of the band with the British monarchy dates back to 1903, when King Edward VII paid an official visit to Malta on April 16. The band was invited to play at Palace Square during that evening when a dinner was held in the Palace on the occasion of the royal visitor.

Initially, the band was given the title of La Nazionale and thereafter La Nazionale Vincitrice. In 1885, the committee requested the permission of Edward, Prince of Wales, to take up his name and the band became known as the Prince of Wales Own until 1901, when the prince was crowned King Edward VII and he gave the society his consent to take on the title The King’s Own Band, a name still enjoyed to this day.

During his visit, King Edward presented a banner to the band club at the Palace, while in 1967, during her visit to Malta, Queen Elizabeth II presented another royal banner to the King’s Own Band.

When Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, visited the club’s premises on November 28, 1952, he said: “I hope that my visit to the King’s Own Band Club will be interpreted as if I had been to all the band clubs of Malta.”

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