Special Boat Section/Squadron/Service

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'Special Raiding Squadron'

In April 1943 1st SAS Regiment was restyled as the Special Raiding Squadron and undertook raids in Sicily and Italy alongside the 2nd Special Air Service, which came into existence in May 1943 in Algeria.
The Special Raiding Squadron was commanded by Major Robert Blair Mayne, better known as 'Paddy'.
In 1944, the S.R.S. and 2 S.A.S. were placed under the umbrella Special Air Service Brigade.
 

A timeline of the Special Boat Section (Home)

Type: Official Letters
Author: Lt Henry S. Quigley, Admin Officer 2SBS
Year of Publishing: 2010
Keywords: sbs, horner

7 pages of a Special Boat Section memorandum about 2 SBS from its formation through to February 1944. An official memorandum by Lieut. Henry S. Quigley, Admin. officer 2 SBS dated February 1944. The last page details equipment used by 2 SBS. This document is from the collection of Arthur Horner who was attached to No.1 Commando and 2 SBS, provided to the CVA in 2010 courtesy of his son Ashton Horner. 

ANDREWS, Trevor John

SBS
Died in service
Sergeant Trevor Andrews was  a member of the SBS personnel who were on the submarine HMS Affray to carry out further training in exiting submarines etc. The submarine sank with all hands in Hurd Deep off Alderney in 1951. 

ARNOLD, David James

SBS
Killed in action or died of wounds
Sergeant David Arnold, SBS formerly 45 Commando, died during operations in Aden [1].
  • On August 7, 1964, the marines were conducting operations in the Radafan Mountains. Sgt Arnold was killed during a planned night ambush near the village of Dhala, a centre of intense dissident activity.

BARNES, George

George Barnes MM Special Boat Section
No 8 Commando
SBS
Military Medal (MM)
Bar to the Military Medal
Sergeant George Barnes was attached to No.8 Commando from the Grenadier Guards. He was selected for the new Folbot Troop commanded by Captain Roger Courtney, which would later become No.1 Special Boat Section, embarking with them for the Middle East as part of Layforce [1].

BOOTH, John Hamilton

No 8 Commando
SBS
Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM)
Corporal John Booth was attached to No.8 Commando until joining the SBS [1][2]. He was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in the Middle East [3][4].
Recommendation

BOWRA, Mark Andrew

SBS
Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)
Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service
Captain Mark Bowra received the Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service in the former Yugoslavia during the period 1 October 2000 to 31 March 2001 [1].

BRICE, Ian William

SBS
Mentioned in Despatches

Sergeant Ian Brice, S.B.S., received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of his service during operations on South Georgia and patrols in the Mount Kent region of the Falklands.

Sources
London Gazette 49134 page 12843.
National Archives file WO373/188/205.

BRITTLEBANK, John

No 3 Commando
No 8 Commando
SBS
Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM)
Bombardier John Brittlebank served in both No.3 and No.8 Commando [1] before joining 1 S.B.S. [2].  He was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in the Field [3].
Recommendation

CLIFFORD, Richard

Captain Richard Cormac Clifford
Royal Marines
Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)
Queen's Commendation for Brave Conduct
Lieutenant Richard Clifford received the Queen's Commendation for Brave Conduct.
Citation
"On the morning of 18th May 1972, a team of Service personnel was sent to deal with a bomb threat in the Queen Elizabeth II which at that time was in mid-Atlantic on her way to Europe.

DEAN, Martin, R.

3 Cdo. Bde. RM
Died in service
Corporal Martin Dean died in service, cause unknown to this archive. The headstone at his grave shows Special Boat Service.
 
Sources
AFM ROH
RM Historical website.
Headstone at his grave.
 

DUNBAR, W.

SBS
Military Medal (MM)
Sergeant W. Dunbar, 'M' Section of the  Special Boat Section, was awarded the Military Medal in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in the Field.

ELLIS, Derek Charles

No 6 Commando
SBS
Military Medal (MM)
Corporal Derek Ellis, formerly 101 Troop No. 6 Commando [1], was awarded the Military Medal [2] in recognition of gallant and distinguished service whilst attached to No. 2 Special Boat Section during operations at Oran harbour on 8 November 1942 [3].

EMBELIN, Arthur Edward

SBS
Killed in action or died of wounds
Company Sergeant Major Arthur Embelin was the original CSM to 2 Special Boat Section. He died during operations at Oran Harbour. He had previously served in 101 Troop ( the Folbot section of No. 6 Commando).
 
Sources
CWGC

GILMOUR, John

Sergeant John Gilmour SBS
No 6 Commando
SBS
Military Medal (MM)
Bar to the Military Medal
Sergeant John Gilmour enlisted into the 79th (Scottish Horse) Regiment RA in May 1940. Volunteering for special service, he joined the 5th Special Service Battalion in November 1940.

HOOPER, Alfred Herbert George

SBS
Died in service
Marine Alfred Hooper was  a member of the SBS personnel who were on the submarine HMS Affray to carry out further training in exiting submarines etc. The submarine sank with all hands in Hurd Deep off Alderney in 1951.
[ Sources: AFM ROH / CVA Gallery information from Tom Crosbie RM]
 

HOULTRAM, Lee Andrew

Sgt. Lee Andrew Houltram RM
Royal Marines
Mentioned in Despatches
Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service
Killed in action or died of wounds
Sergeant Lee Houltram, SBS, died [1] during operations targetting a Taliban bomb making factory near Gereshk, Helmand Province, Afghanistan. He received a posthumous Mention in Despatches in recognition of gallant and distinguished service [2].
  • July 2008 received the Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service in Afghanistan [3].

HOWARD, Henry Colin Francis

Royal Marines
Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)
Captain Henry Howard was appointed M.B.E. (Military Division) in recognition of service within the operations in the South Atlantic.
 
Sources
London Gazette Supp. 49134, page 12857; errata in 49196, page 16351.
 

HOWE, Gilbert Rex

40 Cdo. RM
42 Cdo. RM
Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM)
Military Medal (MM)
British Empire Medal (BEM)
Acting Corporal Gilbert Howe was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his gallantry on 21/22 February 1951 whilst attached to 40 Commando RM during operations at Kampong, Upper Perak, Malaya. He had been recommended for the M.M. but was awarded the D.C.M. [1].
 
Citation

HUNT, Ian Nicholas

SBS
Killed in action or died of wounds

Sergeant Ian Hunt, Special Boat Service,  was killed during an exchange of fire with an SAS patrol near Teal, Falklands.  They had accidentally strayed into an area patrolled by the SAS. He was the only member of the SBS who died in the conflict.

Click here to Watch a video of a service at the memorial to him on the Falkland Islands in 2012.

JARVIS, Dennis William

SBS
Died in service
Marine Dennis Jarvis was  a member of the S.B.S. personnel who were on the submarine HMS Affray to carry out further training in exiting submarines etc. The submarine sank with all hands in Hurd Deep off Alderney in 1951. 

KEALY, Michael Robert Bayley

No 8 Commando
Middle East Commando
SBS
Mentioned in Despatches
Served in No.8 Commando and Layforce [1].
Commanded No.1 S.B.S. Middle East after departure of Major R.J. Courtney M.C. [2].
Returned to the UK 28 July 1943 [2].
Senior Officer in command of the newly formed 'A' and 'B' Special Boat Groups, 2  Special Boat Section [2].

LAPRAIK, John Neilson

51ME Commando
SBS
SAS
Distinguished Service Order (DSO)
Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)
Military Cross (MC)
Bar to the Military Cross
Mentioned in Despatches
Territorial Decoration (TD)
Acting Captain John Neilson Lapraik was awarded the Military Cross for gallant and distinguished service in the Middle East [1].
Recommendation

LOASBY, Ronald William

SBS
Mentioned in Despatches
Corporal Ronald Loasby was taken prisoner of war 31 May 1943 during a beach reconnaissance at Pantellaria whilst serving in 2 Special Boat Section. He received a Mention In Despatches in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in the field.

MCGONIGAL, Ambrose Joseph

Ambrose McGonigal MC
No 12 Commando
SBS
Military Cross (MC)
Bar to the Military Cross
Mentioned in Despatches
Lieutenant Ambrose McGonigal was awarded the M.C. [1] for distinguished service during a raid on the enemy held island of Sark on the night of the 27th December 1943. This was a reconnaissance operation to obtain certain information and if possible capture a prisoner.

MOORES, B.

No 3 Commando
SBS

Trooper Moores, No.3 Commando, was wounded 27 December 1941 during Operation Archery at Vaagso [1]. He later joined 2 Special Boat Section [2][3] and by 1944 was serving in 'Z' Special Boat section operating from Ceylon [3].

MUNRO, George

No 11 Commando
50ME Commando
SBS
Killed in action or died of wounds
Sergeant George Munro, a veteran of the Litani River raid, died during operations with the S.B.S., on the island of Samos after leaving the Commando.
Postings
Sep   1940 - volunteered for 11 Cdo.
Mar  1941- arrive Middle East - 'C' Bn Layforce
Aug  1941- 11 Cdo absorbed into ME Cdo

NEWBY, George Eric

SBS
Military Cross (MC)
Lieutenant George Newby, 'M' Section of the  Special Boat Section, was awarded the Military Cross in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in the Field [1][2][3]. He had previously served in 1 Special Service Regiment.

PAGNAM, Joe Colin Conesa

Pagnam 2 Special Boat Section
SBS
Mentioned in Despatches
2 May 1942 commissioned Second Lieutenant at O.C.T.U. from the ranks of the Gordon Highlanders [1][1a].
2 August 1942 arrived 2 Special Boat Section [2].
Took part in the operation at Oran [2].
December 1942 assumed duties of Administration Officer at 2SBS HQ [2].

PETERS, Richard James McGregor

Lieutenant Richard Peters 2 SBS
SBS
Mentioned in Despatches
Killed in action or died of wounds
Lieutenant Richard Peters, 2 Special Boat Section, died [1] whilst leading a small reconnaissance operation to gather intelligence from villagers on the strength and disposition of Japanese forces on the other side of a bridge across the River Irrawaddy in the area of Pakkoku-Pagan. He was accompanied by 2 Corporals and an Interpreter. 

PHILLIPS, Mark Christopher

Royal Marines
Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)
Acting Major Mark Phillips was appointed M.B.E. (Military Division) in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in the field in 2004 [1].
  • 30 June 2010 promoted Lieutenant Colonel [2].
  • Died after a short illness aged 56yrs having retired from the Service [3].
Sources

PLANK, Ian

SBS
Killed in action or died of wounds
Corporal Ian Plank, a Swimmer Canoeist with the S.B.S.,  was killed by hostile fire during a Coalition operation in Iraq.  [Sources: AFM ROH / MOD / email Jase]
 

POMFORD, Douglas

No 11 Commando
SBS
Military Medal (MM)
Bar to the Military Medal
Corporal Douglas Pomford joined the S.B.S. from No. 11 Commando. He was awarded the Military Medal in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in the field [1].
 

RODNEY, John Francis

No 1 Commando
SBS
Mentioned in Despatches
Baron John Francis Rodney served as a Lieutenant in No.1 Commando and as an Operational Officer in HQ, 2 SBS.
Post war he was a member of both the Commando Association and the Burma Star Association.
 
Sources
Obituaries in Commando Association newsletter 96 issued March 1993.

SEVERN, Clive

LCpl. Severn SBS
No 11 Commando
SBS
Mentioned in Despatches
Killed in action or died of wounds
Lance Corporal Clive Severn died at sea. He received a posthumous MiD "in recognition of gallant and distinguished services in the Middle East. [Source: London Gazettes Supp. 36065, page 2870.]
 

SHERGOLD, Edward Norman

SBS
Died in service
Marine Edward Shergold was a member of the S.B.S. personnel who were on the submarine HMS Affray to carry out further training in exiting submarines etc. The submarine sank with all hands in Hurd Deep off Alderney in 1951. 

STANWORTH, John

Royal Marines
Died in service
Corporal John Stanworth was serving at HMS Rooke, a shore establishment in Gibraltar, at the time of his death. He was King's Badge man for JE26 Squad in 1966.
 
Sources
AFM ROH
Andy Holloway. WO2 RM.
 
Notes

STEPHENS, Seth Vincent Scott

Cpl Seth Stephens CGC
SBS
Conspicuous Gallantry Cross (CGC)
Killed in action or died of wounds
Corporal Seph Stephens, S.B.S., died during operations in Southern Afghanistan. He was hit by enemy small arms fire while he was protecting and inspiring his British and Afghan comrades. He made a conscious decision to move to provide more effective covering fire. Moving along what was a very exposed position while under accurate fire, increased the risk to him significantly.

THOMSON, Jonathan James

45 Cdo. RM
SBS
3 Cdo. Bde. RM
Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
Queen's Gallantry Medal (QGM)
Mentioned in Despatches
Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Thomson O.B.E., was awarded The Queen's Gallantry Medal in recognition of gallantry within the operations in Northern Iraq and Southern Turkey  in 1991[1].
Citation 

VAN DER HORST, Richard Evert

SBS
Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)
Queen's Commendation for Bravery
Died in service
Lieutenant Colonel Richard Evert van der Horst OBE, Officer Commanding the Special Boat Service, died in a diving accident during an amphibious exercise off Norway on March 7 2005; he died on March 14. 
  • 1984 joined the Royal Marines as a university cadet entrant and passed out in 1988 with the Sword of Honour *.

WALTON, Richard Anthony Carl

Royal Marines
Died in service unknown cause

Colour Sergeant Richard Walton was serving at RMDIV Leconfield at the time of his death.

Richard Walton joined the Royal Marines in 1985 and served 2 days short of 20 years. During his career he served at Poole, 40 Commando, Commando Logistics Regiment, 42 Commando, CTCRM, and SBS. [Sources: AFM ROH / Navy News issue 1st June 2005.]

WESLEY, Edward Alfred Wellesley

Edward Arthur Wellesley Wesley SBS
SBS
Military Cross (MC)
Corporal Edward Wesley serving at the time in 2 S.B.S. was granted an immediate emergency commission  and appointed 2/Lieutenant on the 6th December 1943 [1]. He was retained within 2 S.B.S. and then proceeded overseas to Supreme Allied Command, South East Asia (S.A.C.S.E.A.) [2].
 

WILLIAMS, Thomas Ivor

Thomas Ivor Williams MM, SBS
SBS
No 1 Commando
Military Medal (MM)
Mentioned in Despatches
Sergeant Thomas Ivor Williams, 'B' Group 2 Special Boat Section, was awarded the Military Medal for gallant and distinguished service in Burma between August and November 1944 [1][1a].
Recommendation

WILSON, Robert

No 8 Commando
SBS
Distinguished Service Order (DSO)
Bar to the Distinguished Service Order
Mentioned in Despatches
Territorial Efficiency Medal
Gunner Robert Wilson was commissioned Second Lieutenant on 2 September 1939 [1]. After volunteering for the Commandos he joined the folbot section of No.8 Commando, prior to a move to the Special Boat Section in the Middle East.

WRIGHT, Harold

SBS
Mentioned in Despatches
Gunner Harold Wright 2 Special Boat Section, received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in North Africa. The operation was the Oran Landings, an assault on the port by HMS Walney and HMS Hartland, 8th November 1942.  He formed one of the crew of No.3 Folbot with Cpl. Sidlow, which was launched from HMS Walney.

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