The Atholl Highlanders is a Scottish infantry regiment. Based in Blair Atholl, the regiment is not part of the British Army. Instead, the regiment is in the private employ of the Duke of Atholl, making it the United Kingdom's, and indeed Europe's, only legal private army.
Today, the Atholl Highlanders is a purely ceremonial regiment, of approximately 100 men, including pipes and drums. This regiment has no connection, except the name, with the 77th Foot of 1777. The regiment wears the tartan of the Clan Murray of Atholl and has as its cap badge the clan crest approved by the Duke, which it wears along with a sprig of juniper, which is the clan's plant, and is presented by the Duke on his annual inspection. The regiment is responsible for the defence of Blair Castle, the surrounding estate and its inhabitants, but in practice usually only parades twice a year at the regiment's annual inspection when the present Duke comes from his home in South Africa to inspect his men, and the Atholl Gathering Highland Games, which is hosted by the Duke, on the last weekend in May.
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