This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site you consent to our use of cookies. more info | ok
british special forces
UKSF SAS SBS SRR 14 Int SFSG E Sqn 18 (UKSF) Sigs Royal Marines Paras Pathfinders Aviation RAF Regt Gurkhas Artillery BRF EOD Intel Police
british special forces » royal marines
▼ share this page

Royal Marines

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.

royal marines
Royal Marines snipers armed with L115 rifles
(click for fullsize image)
more royal marines photos
43 Commando Royal Marines
43 Commando (Fleet Protection Group) specialize in nuclear and maritime security.
more info: 43 commando
Mountain Leader Royal Marines
This elite cadre of Royal Marines are experts in mountain and artic warfare.
more info: Mountain Leaders

Elite UK Force's section on the Royal Marines features:

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 Commandos

The primary fighting elements of the Royal Marines are the battalion-sized Commando units.

  • 40 Commando
    (based at Norton Manor Barracks, Taunton, Somerset)
  • 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)
    • Forward Repair Team (FRT)
    • Regimental Aid Post (RAP)
    • B Echelon (B Ech)
  • 2 Close Combat Companies :
    • Company Headquarters
      (Coy HQ)
    • 3 Close Combat Troops
      (Troop HQ, 3 Rifle Sections, Manoeuvre Support Section)
  • 2 Stand Off Companies
    (1 x tracked, 1 x wheeled)
    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)
Photo of Royal Marines Commandos
Royal Marines Commandos - Britain's elite amphibious force.
U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Samuel Guerra/Released

42 Commando - Maritime Operations Commando

42 Commando are a specialist maritime operations unit. Roles include force protection, personnel recovery and maritime interdiction operations (MIOPS).

more info: 42 Commando

Juliet Company 42 Commando deploys specialist boarding and sniper teams:

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).

Mountain Leaders

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)

Royal Marines Related Items

facebook facebook youtube
RM Green Team
Green Team
Royal Marines Boarding Team
view: RM Green Team
42 Commando Vikings
SFSG Marksman
SFSG soldier armed with HK417 rifle
view: SFSG Marksman
Squadron Reconnaissance Team (SRT)
view: 539 ASRM SRT


Share this page:

not endorsed by or affiliated with the ministry of defence | all information is non-classified & sourced from public domain |

all images are for educational purposes and sourced from the public domain where possible - image policy | privacy policy