Royal Marines

Ex Blue Steel: Royal Marine Commandos Train On Salisbury Plain

Personnel have been taking part in the exercise, where the mission is to take control of a mock village from the enemy.

Royal Marines have been on Salisbury Plain practising tactical training ahead of what looks to be their busiest time of the year.

Personnel from 42 Commando, 45 Commando, and Commando Logistics Regiment have been facing constant tests, honing their tactical skills.

They are on Exercise Blue Steel, which happens once a year.

Their mission is to take control of a mock village from the enemy.

Marine Lewis Boateng, 45 Commando, Fire Support Group, said: "It's a good way to amalgamate all of the commando units and get everyone singing off the same song sheet and working together well.

"It definitely keeps us sharp, because obviously if you've not done things for a while you get a bit of skill-fade, you lose touch a little bit, so it's good to keep on top of your skills and drills."

Keeping watch from within the village.

Major Sam Hughes, OC X-Ray Company, 45 Commando, said: "You've got so many weapons systems and so many ways to use them, whether it be offensive, defensive, or enabling operations, you have to constantly train to use them.

"The risk [of not doing such exercises] is pretty obvious in the fact that you have massive skill-fade not only on the weapons systems but you also lose your tactical sharpness of how to employ them in a tactical scenario.

"Sitting on the range with a weapons system is one thing.

Approaching with caution.

"Being able to do that in the wind, the rain that that we've experienced this week in a tactical scenario with 20 vehicles moving around you, de-conflicting with all those vehicles is absolutely huge, hence why it's really, really important to come together at least once a year with all of the assets because that adds a huge amount of complexity."

With a busy schedule ahead, they are making the most of valuable training time.

At the moment, 45 Commando is the lead commando group so would be the first to be called on if required.