Royal Marines

Royal Marines Practise Storming Beaches Ahead Of European Mission

More than 300 Royal Marines refreshed their amphibious warfare skills ahead of their deployment next spring.

Royal Marines from Arbroath-based 45 Commando have been practising their amphibious warfare skills in Scotland ahead of a forthcoming deployment around northern Europe. 

More than 300 marines crashed ashore from assault ship HMS Albion, using a range of landing and raiding craft to perfect their sea to land capabilities.

The training, known as Wader, is the cornerstone of amphibious operations and helps to prepare sailors and commandos for any eventuality.

It includes capsizing drills into the freezing cold water, nighttime beach landings and the quick transportation of land vehicles.

Personnel from the 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, 24 Commando Royal Engineers and Commando Logistics Regiment also took part alongside the marines in preparation for the Littoral Response Group (North) deployment.

The marines used a range of landing and raiding craft on the exercises (Picture: Royal Navy).

The intensive training is treated as a mission rehearsal and provides personnel with the core skills to conduct an amphibious assault in any conditions. 

Marine Medley of 45 Commando, said: "Although we experience ship-to-shore movement and landing craft operations in training, it is actually quite a complex procedure which needs refreshing.

"Given that we need to be ready to do this for real at any point, I'm glad we completed a Wader at the start of the deployment. 

"I'm confident that I know exactly what to do if things don’t go quite to plan."

Lieutenant Colonel Innes Catton, Commander of Littoral Forces and Commanding Officer of 45 Commando, explained why the practice was so important.

The intensive training provides personnel with the core skills to conduct an amphibious assault in any conditions (Picture: Royal Navy). 

"Projecting a commando raiding force to a target ashore is a complex manoeuvre involving many moving parts, often in adverse weather conditions, and almost certainly at night.

"Practice makes perfect, which is very surely the case for difficult amphibious operations, so it also rehearses what to do when things go wrong and how to regain the initiative when challenges, such as capsizing, present themselves. 

"This is not just a training serial, to Commandos, this is vital battle preparation for being able to fight and win."

The Royal Marines will go on for further training in Exercise Highland Dagger, an 11-day tactical exercise before the Littoral Response Task Group moves into Northern Europe and the Baltic region for operations with NATO.

Cover image: HMS Albion, Royal Marines and US Forces work on amphibious exercises in Scotland (Picture: Royal Navy).