The Royal Marines are the amphibious commando force of the Royal Navy. In recent times, the Royal Marine Commandos have been deployed to Afghanistan and played a major part in the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Elite UK Force's section on the Royal Marines features:
Royal Marines Video
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3 Commando Brigade
The Royal Marines (or 'Bootnecks' as they call themselves), in the form of 3 Commando Brigade, are a key element of the UK's Rapid Reaction Force.
The primary fighting elements of the Royal Marines are the battalion-sized Commando units.
- 40 Commando
(based at Norton Manor Barracks, Taunton, Somerset)
- 42 Commando
(based at Bickleigh Barracks, Plymouth, Devon)
- 45 Commando
(based at Condor Barracks, Arbroath, Angus, Scotland)
Each Commando is organised into 6 companies. Each company is made up of platoon-sized Troops:
- 1 Command Company:
- 1 Logistic Company:
- A Echelon 1 (A Ech1)
- A Echelon 2 (A Ech2)
- B Echelon (B Ech)
- 2 Close Combat Companies
- Company Headquarters
- 3 Close Combat Troops
(Troop HQ, 3 Rifle Sections, Manoeuvre Support Section)
- 2 Stand Off Companies
(1 tracked - Viking APCs, 1 wheeled - MWMIKs)
consisting of :
- Company Headquarters (Coy HQ)
- Heavy Machine Gun Troop
(6 x HMG / GMG)
- AT Troop
(6 x Javelin)
- 1x Close Combat Troop
(5 officers + 78 other ranks)
Royal Marines Operational History
The Royal Marines have a long history, beginning as ship-borne troops, evolving into Commandos during World War 2, to the elite fighting force of today.
more info : Royal Marines Operations
Special Forces Support
1 company (F Coy) of Royal Marines are assigned to the Special Forces Support Group (SFSG).
Each commando battalion contains specialists in mountain and arctic warfare, known as Mountain Leaders (MLs). Mountain Leaders are proficient in cliff assaults, high altitude warfare and skiing.
more info : Mountain Leaders »
The Royal Marines employ some specialised vehicles. These include:
- MWMIK - armoured 4x4 all-terrain vehicles used in the fire support and recon roles
- Land Rover WMIKs - heavily armed but lightly armoured vehicles used for long range reconnaissance and fire support (largely replaced by the new MWMIK)
- Pinzgauer 4x4s - rugged and nimble troop carriers in use in Afghanistan
- all-terrain-vehicles (ATV)s - tracked vehicles designed to transport men and equipment over all kinds of ground. These include the BVS 10 Viking and BV206D.
The Royal Marines operate a range of watercraft:
Royal Marines Selection & Training
The Royal Marines go through extensive training. An initial selection period is followed by a 32 week training program.
more info : initial Royal Marines selection »
want to pass selection for the Royal Marines? Click here to find out how »
Royal Marines Special Units
There are several specialised RM sub units :
Fleet Protection Group Royal Marines
A special cadre of Royal Marines tasked with fleet and nuclear security.
more info : Fleet Protection Group »
Brigade Patrol Troop (Brigade Reconnaissance Force)
3 Commando Brigade's elite reconnaissance force.
more info : Brigade Patrol Troop »
The Special Boat Service (SBS)
Drawn mostly from RM ranks, but technically under the command of the Directorate of Special Forces and part of UKSF, the SBS is a special forces unit on a par with the army's SAS.
Roles of the SBS include Maritime Counter-Terrorism, beach and shore reconnaissance, drug smuggling interdiction and behind the lines reconnaissance and sabotage missions.
more info : Special Boat Service »
Royal Marines Reserves (RMR)
The regular Commandos are augmented by fully trained civlian volunteers from 5 RMR units
more info : Royal Marines Reserves »
Other Royal Marines Units
1 Assault Group Royal Marines (1 AGRM)