In 1571, king Frederik II of Denmark founded a corps of guards for his own protection. The corps was named the Halbardiers, and was to be his personal guard in war and peace.
The corps consisted of 50 men and one leader, all officers from the army. They enjoyed several privileges including exoneration if, after an attempt at reconciliation had been made, they killed a man in a fair fight.
In 1666, the Halbardiers were incorporated in the army and in 1685 the corps was enlarged to 6 companies. Most of the Halbardiers fell at the battle of Gadebusch, a town in Germany, at that time part of Swedish Pomerania. It was a battle fought against the troops of the Swedish king Karl XII, against whom the Danish king Frederik IV was waging war.
King Christian VI used the Halbardiers as a palace guard. ln addition, the corps did guard duty at the supreme court, and it was the winning party in a court case which had to foot the bill for this guard duty.
From the start the weapons of the Halbardier were the halbard with spear, axe and hook, and the partisan. In 1703, the flintlock musket became the standard weapon of the Halbardier.
The kettledrum and bugle were the musical instruments of the Halbardier, and it was the job of the musicians to accompany the king on his travels and play for the king and his guests at court festivities, during which they also played other instruments. The Halbardier guards led the coronation procession of king Christian IV with their kettledrums, drums and flutes.
ln August 1763, the corps of Halbardiers was disbanded and its members continued as officers in other units of the army. But right up to 1848 the Halbardiers were used on special occasions in the royal household.
The Frederiksborg Halbardier guard — the Hillerød town guard,as it is known today was founded on the very date that Frederik II founded the old corps of Halbardiers, namely 6 February 1971.
The drum corps, with its pike bearers, were the first on the streets, but only a few years later a brass band was added. In the past few years, the corps has taken part in many functions both in Denmark and abroad.
The Halbardiers have, for example, taken part in international tattoos, the official openings of exhibitions and congresses, concerts for Radio Denmark, cultural functions, town marches and concerts, company jubilees and much more.
The drum corps has taken part in the reception of guests both at private and public celebrations, business inaugurations and large receptions.
On its travels in Europe the corps has gained much experience in playing for international audiences and has received much praise for its stylish marching and excellent concerts.