More than 300 Royal Marines brought their fire and fury onto the beaches of Scotland as they refreshed amphibious warfare skills ahead of deployment around Northern Europe this spring.
The marines of Arbroath-based 45 Commando crashed ashore from assault ship HMS Albion, perfecting their amphibious warfare skills using a range of landing and raiding craft. HMS Albion was used as the headquarters for the exercises, deploying a variety of landing craft from her carnivorous dock full of commandos and their equipment to the coastline.
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. The weather conditions were not fantastic, but it made for a realistic experience when we conduct capsize drills. I’m confident that I know exactly what to do if things don’t go quite to plan.”
This is all in preparation for operations around the North Atlantic, North Sea and Baltic this spring on the Littoral Response Group (North) deployment. The training, known as Wader, is the cornerstone of amphibious operations and helps to prepare sailors and commandos for any eventuality. It includes capsize drills into the freezing cold water, beach landings in the dead of night and the transporting large vehicles onto the beach from landing craft.
This intensive training is treated as a mission rehearsal and provides personnel with the core skills and confidence to conduct an amphibious assault, even in the most arduous conditions. More than 300 Royal Marines completed this training, as well as personnel from the 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, 24 Commando Royal Engineers and Commando Logistics Regiment. The Commander Littoral Forces works closely with Commander Amphibious Task Force to bring the commando force together, maximising their ability to deliver their mission objectives.