A résumé of the wartime RM Commandos

Royal Marine Commando

Early in 1942 it was decided to expand the number of Commando Units and volunteers were called for from the Royal Marines for the first RM Commando. It was known as 'A' Commando, formed in Feb'42 and renamed in Oct'42 as 40RM Commando. In the same month (Oct'42) the 8th RM Battalion was disbanded and volunteers were called from that Battallion for the new 41RM Commando. They were to be the only RM Commando units consisting entirely of 'volunteers' as in the Army Commandos. In August 1943 further RM Battalions were disbanded in order to raise new RM Commandos. 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 9th and 10th RM Battalions became 42, 43, 44, 45, 46 and 47 RM Commandos respectively. In March 1944 the 7th RM Battalion and some Marines from MNBDO11 formed the new 48RM Commando. It should be noted that RM Commando Units underwent full Commando training at Achnacarry. For various reasons, not least the fact that a RM Bn., consisted of almost 1,000 Marines whereas a Commando consisted of approx 450 Commandos, not all RM's went onto Commando training. Those who did not, or who were unsuccessful on the Commando Course, were allocated to other sections of the Royal Marines, including Landing Craft duties. In 1943 both Army and RM Commando Units, each keeping their separate identities, were grouped into 4 Special Service Brigades, later known as Commando Brigades.

Nos. 1 and 4 Brigades operated in North West Europe; No. 2 Bde in Italy, Yugoslavia, Greece, and Albania; and No. 3 Bde in Burma

Return to the WW2 Commando pages HERE.

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