7 Commando

The first troops of this Commando formed up in several locations.  ‘A’ Troop in Gamblingay under Capt. Wylie R.E. while the H.Q. Staff came together in Billericay Essex. A small party of ‘B’ Troop formed in St. Albans and the remainder in Newmarket under Capt G March Phillips who was later to command No.62 Commando. After this scattered beginning all the various sections came together finally in Felixstowe at the end of July 1940. H.Q. being in a school in Station Rd Felixstowe.

Under a restructuring that only last a few months No.7 was combined with No.4 Commando as the 3rd Special Service Bn., under the command of Lt. Col. Dudley Lister MC before being redesignated again as No.7 Commando. Lt Col F.B. Colvin took over command from Lt Col Lister MC who assumed command of No.4 Commando.  

In December 1940 they embarked on the ships ‘Glenroy’ and ‘Glengyle’ for passage to Inverary where they underwent boat training. On 31st January 1941 the Commando embarked for the Middle East. Arriving at Alexandria the Commando was now ‘A’ Battalion of ‘Layforce’ . 

Operations included Bardia 19th April 1941 and Crete. Ordered to assist in the evacuation of British Troops from the island against overwhelming odds many of the Commando were taken P.O.W by the German invasion force.

After this the Commando was disbanded.

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Read an account submitted to us about Layforce

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