Course Start dates:

Hi there, i was wondering does any one know how the intakes are done for Rm Officers. Is there an intake ever couple of weeks or is it done at set times of the year. If so does any one know the dates of the next few intakes? I want to go travelling for a while before i join.


War Hero
Babbs said:
Hi there, i was wondering does any one know how the intakes are done for Rm Officers. Is there an intake ever couple of weeks or is it done at set times of the year. If so does any one know the dates of the next few intakes? I want to go travelling for a while before i join.
Hiya Babbs, welcome to Rum Ration.

RM Officers have limited intakes per year compared to Other Rank recruits, who join every other week. Generally there's only an intake per term, but it varies due to the amount passing selection (POC & AIB) and the Corps requirements.

You should be aware that both POC & AIB have limited validity & would be best advised discussing your life plans & career plans with your Officer Careers Liaison Officer (OCLO) at your nearest Armed Forces Careers Office (AFCO) rather than pass selection, travel the world & miss the opportunity to join or have to re-take all aspects upon return. Speak to your AFCO before you make travel plans.

As long as you join the Corps as an Officer before your 26th birthday, you shouldn't have a problem. You're probably best advised to enter the selection process after your intended traveling, allowing a year to apply, prepare, pass selection & hopefully get selected for entry.

You need to be aware that you may pass all aspects of the selection process, but not be selected.

Good luck.
Have you got any tips or hints for the POC/AIB. I know fitness is a must but any other things they are hot on? Ie attitude, appearence etc???
Hi Babbs, what are the Royal Marines looking for, mmm, someone with a bit of common dog (Sense) is a good place to start.
At the top of this page is a search icon, if you click on it you will go to a page where you can click and customise a search of this site to your hearts content, although I'm a tad old (Cough, splutter)to go the AIB route I did it for you, 3 clicks later and here we go a [email protected] of gen

If you scroll down to Potential Officers first post he has some very good tips for AIB candidates, give it a read and let Ninja have the night off :thumright: .
I have been doing some research into the Rm and there history, but i have got a few strange figures. Therefore can you confirm the exact number of V.C's awarded to the Corps. Because i am getting different figures from different places. I want to get this wrong as it a massive honour on the corps i feel ill look a bit of a prat if i do!


War Hero
Babbs said:
I have been doing some research into the Rm and there history, but i have got a few strange figures. Therefore can you confirm the exact number of V.C's awarded to the Corps. Because i am getting different figures from different places. I want to get this wrong as it a massive honour on the corps i feel ill look a bit of a prat if i do!
It used to list them in the RM Commando careers publication, but it's now been removed. Your best bit is research each of the Commando Unit Histories on the official website. If they are wrong, they could hardly criticise you for referencing the official site.

Possibly the reason for confusion with regard the all-up figure is because there are Commandos that are not Royal Marines (Royal Navy, Royal Engineers & Royal Artillery, for example), and Royal Marines that aren't always Commandos. (RM Band Service, for example).

Anyone applying for Officer RM after 1st July will now sit the Ratings recruiting test, pre-joining fitness test, medical and OCLO interview & pre AIB brief before they go on AIB. (Not all at the same time!!)

Officers undergo POC first then Admiralty Interview board (AIB)

For AIB itself:

On arrival at HMS Sultan you will be directed to the AIB complex where you will be introduced in the examining room and split into your boards which will probably place teams together in threes or fours. All tests are completed in these groups so get to know your team! The first night is free time- make use of it.

Day ONE:

Up at 6.15 and sat in examining room by 7.30 for psychometric tests, general Naval knowledge tests and an essay.

Examples of RN Knowledge Questions

1. What aircraft do the Royal Navy currently use?
2. What is the name of the aircraft replacing the FA2 Sea Harrier?
3. Which ships carry aircraft & what types do they carry?
4. Which insignia denotes a Lieutenant Commander
5. What does N.A.T.O stand for?
6. How much is the annual Royal Navy Budget?
7. What type of missile is the Sea Dart?
8. What is the range of the Side Winder missile?
9. What is the rank badge of a Chief Petty Officer?
10. What is the beam of a ship?
11. How many countries are in NATO?
12. Name the UK naval bases?
13. What is the name of the military operations in Afghanistan?
14. Which of the following pictures is a survey ship?
15. What is the displacement of an aircraft carrier?
16. How many are typical frigate crew?
17. Which of these are typical weapons of a submarine?
18. Which of these is a famous battle recently been celebrated?
19. Which of these pictures is a type 22 frigate?
20. How many naval personnel are there approximately?
21. Which is a CIWS?
22. What weapons are the new Type 45 destroyer going to carry?
23. How long is the initial commission as an officer?
24. What sized crew will the new destroyers have?
25. What was the name of Nelson’s ship at the battle of Trafalgar?
26. What is the displacement of the New Type 45 Destroyer?
27. What is the main weapon system fitted to the new Astute submarines?
28. What type of engines are fitted to the Type 22 and Type 23 Frigates?
29. HMS Endurance is what kind of Ship?
30. What does SSBN stand for? How any are there?
31. What is the crew complement of a Vanguard class submarine?

Examples of RM Knowledge Questions

This will be mainly RM knowledge with a couple of navy questions such as

1. What is the RN annual budget?
2. Who is the first sea lord?
3. What does NATO stand for?
4. What helicopters do the RM use?
5. Name a Landing platform helicopter and a Landing platform dock?
6. What is the rank slide of a regimental sergeant major?
7. Where are the three commando units based?
8. How many men can be carried in a LCVP?
9. How many men in a commando unit?
10. How many men in the RM?
11. Which ATV do the RM used?
12. What is the name of the new commando structure?
13. At what rank do you enter the RM as an officer?
14. How many men in a platoon?
15. What is the corps motto?
16. What is the highest rank in the RM?
17. In what year was the battle of Trafalgar?
18. What weapon does a RM rifleman carry?
19. Which anti tank weapons do the RM employ?
20. What happens to injured recruits during training?
21. What time is allowed for a RM officer to complete the 30 mile speed march?
22. What is the RM motto?
23. What happened at Walcheren?
24. What is the personal weapon & it’s calibre?
25. List 10 RM specialisations?
26. What are the Commando Tests?
27. Where are 40/42/45 Commando based?
28. How long is Recruit training?
29. What is the Corps birth date?
30. When were the Commandos founded?

Psychometric Tests

You are not expected to finish the tests, they get progressively harder, don’t panic! Just work through the ones you can do.

• Verbal booklet questions first.
Very limited time, synonym, antonym and jumbled sentences
• Non-verbal
Sequences and patterns of shapes etc
• Numerical
Estimation with large numbers, decimal numbers, equations and fractions, statistical interpretation. On the statistical front, there are two tests. One in a tabular form and one in a graph form. It may be wise to try the graph form first then try and then do the tabular form.
• Spatial awareness.
Directions, distances, in relation to each other. Can’t make notes but can use your fingers on the table to make patterns and help to keep track.
• Speed accuracy
Copying exam, labelling and categorising, not hard but mustn’t panic, work methodically and quickly.


The emphasis is on structure and an ability to present an argument rather than depth of knowledge. Also only two pages of A4 allowed with big line spacing so don’t over estimate how much you need to write and make sure you plan it.

Typical topics.

1. Global Warming.
2. 24 Hour Licensing
3. Terrorism and ID Cards
4. How can we improve the Navy face in media?
5. How responsible are parents for their kid’s behavior in schools?
6. How serious can we take stories in newspapers?
7. How can we effectively deal with worldwide disasters?
8. Iraq and the coalition’s presence there
9. Gun crime
10. Do tabloid news papers have any credibility?
11. Is spending £xxxx on 2 new Aircraft Carriers justifiable?
12. Solutions to Hooliganism?

Finish tests at 11.30

Practice discussion exercise.
Look at the problem and take note of the model answer. There is often no singular right answer but look at how the problem is approached. A scenario is given. Problem follows. How would you deal with it? Good to put down distances and times relating to speed. Model answer is given.

Leadership practice.
Get involved! Get to know the equipment and your team mates, get used to the gym and its atmosphere. Ask any questions as you will be expected to work alone in the real task.

As a Royal Marine candidate the score does not matter as you have completed the POC however it is a test of motivation, so give your all. Also having been in suits and under pressure indoors for most of the day this is a great chance to let off steam. You will feel great after a shower and some food, much more relaxed. Although the MSFA is not a pass or fail test it is marked and is worth 10 marks (To all non RM candidates) so give it your best shot to gain maximum marks.

The day is finished after this so relax and chat with your team about the next morning; how are you going to approach the planning exercise and the leadership tasks? Make sure you are all of the same attitude as you need to help each other to pass.

It is really useful to be familiar with all the equipment, methods and orders used in the gym. Finally a walk to the pub could give you some fresh air and a chance to relax
DAY 3:

You will either do the gym task or the planning exercise first.

Planning exercise
Read through the situation provided
Try to pick out the key information and take notes
You will enter the room and sit opposite the N1 while the board watches on.
The N1 will introduce a problem to your scenario and ask you to discuss what you are going to do.
Get involved but listen to others too.
Explore all possibilities even far fetched ones then dismiss them if necessary, remember there is not always a right answer they just need to see you discussing and planning.
One of the group will then present the plan and the N1 will question you all in turn.
Don’t switch off during other peoples questions! If they get it wrong the question will come to you.
If you weren’t involved in the discussion then you may not understand the plan and will struggle to answer questions on it.
Simple speed distance time questions will become difficult under pressure, work out other people’s questions as they may get them wrong and they will come to you.
Listen to the N1’s questioning hints as they will often point you towards a solution.
Finally you are asked to leave the room and come in individually to present your final plan.
Here you can offer a completely different plan to the groups (the N1’s questioning may have given you some new ideas)
You will be stressed from the questioning so concentrate on speaking calmly as you present your plan.

Leadership task
You each have a task to lead and there is a leaderless task
Be loud and confident at all times whilst leading, anyone coming into the room should be able to pick out the leader very quickly.
The day before’s brief and any practice the night before should stand you in good stead.

Split into 3 parts – values, RN/RM knowledge and leadership.
Based on competency and past experience rather than current affairs etc

Have experiences ready to give as well as those you have put on your AIB form!!
The interview is very friendly, the board are simply trying to find out what sort of person you are, relax!

Interview Questions.

N1 Questions (Lieutenant) which focus on Courage and Value

1. What do you do in your spare time?
2. Are you a member of any clubs?
3. If so what is your role?
4. Give an example in your life when something went wrong
5. Ever had a time in your life when you have had to deal with Racism
6. How did you find the ‘Bleep’ test?
7. What was your training for the MSFA?
8. Positions of responsibility?
9. Have you ever been in a dangerous situation?
10. Have you experienced or witnessed racism or bullying?
11. When have you set yourself a challenge?

N2 Questions (Commander / Lt Col) which focus on reasons for joining and RNK

1. Asked what Class of Ships and Submarines are in the pictures on the walls?
2. Name various weapons used by the Ships and Submarines
3. At the map of the world: Show current Operations
What are they there for?
What Ships are there?
(Use the fleet review on the first page of the Navy News for the navy information)

4. Why do you think you would be a good leader?
5. Why join the Royal Navy?
6. Would you be able to shoot someone?
7. Would you be able to drop a bomb on someone if civilians were nearby?
8. What is involved in the first two yrs of training as a young officer etc?
9. How do you feel about making decisions which may cost lives whether it is the enemy, your men, civilians or yourself?

Board President (Captain of Full Col) which focus on Leadership.

1. Why does the Royal Navy need Officers / Leaders?
2. Give an example in your life when you have had to lead a group of people
3. Give an example in your life when you have had to organise an event
4. Given an example in your life when you have been given a budget to stick to.
5. What is your current job?
6. What does that entail and what do you do?
7. When have you worked in a team to achieve a goal?
8. What was your role in the team?
9. Give an example when something went wrong in the team
10. What did you do when something went wrong?
11. How did you fix the problem?
12. What is a good leader?
13. Have you ever led a team?
14. Has leading a team ever gone wrong?
15. Have you ever lead a group who were deliberately difficult?
16. How did you deal with this?
17. Have you ever organised anything?
18. When have you worked as part of a team?
19. When have you experienced a set back and what did you do about it?

After the interview the AIB is over you will go for a nervous lunch while you wait for your results.

Hints and Tips:

There are five main areas of assessment: The Pass Mark is 180 out of a possible maximum 300

Effective intelligence (Worth 90 marks (actually marked out of 45 and then x2))
Leadership (Worth 90 marks (actually marked out of 45 and then x2))
Powers of communication (Worth 60 marks)
Courage and values (Worth 30 marks)
Motivation (Worth 30 marks)
A weighted emphasis goes onto effective intelligence and leadership.
Each part of the AIB tests some of these elements.


Psychometric test results – good, above average, average, below average or poor.
Leadership Task – plan workable/complicated/incomplete etc; ability to think ahead and adapt as necessary; do they learn from mistakes, mechanical perception.
Planning Ex– aware of resources/events/constraints; provides and analyses solutions, considers alternatives. Qu/STDs – good, above average, average, below average or poor; flexible under Qu, attentive and responsive. Final presentation – clear prioritised aims; sensible plan using Q&A to adapt from group solution if necessary.


Leadership Task – motivates; has presence and authority; delegates effectively; use of equipment and/or team; positioning; listens to and incorporates others’ ideas as necessary. Support – works hard; offers advice.
Planning Ex– contribution to group solution; level of participation; interaction with other candidates; ability to listen to others’ ideas; chairs; develops group solutions, listening skills, assertiveness.
Interview – amount of evidence/quality of examples. Takes on the lead; mentors and encourages; works as team member; understands concept of leadership; plans and organizes, understanding of leadership.


Essay – good, above average, average, below average, poor. Comments on structure, sentences, spelling, punctuation, maturity, answers question as necessary.
Leadership Task – volume; confidence; style of directions; clarity of brief, confidence, style of leadership..
Planning Ex– clarity of contribution during discussion phase. Final presentation – structure and confidence.
Interview – articulation; development of answers; non-verbal gestures; diction; power of expression.


Leadership Task – courage of convictions; enthusiasm; confidence on equipment; attitude; self confidence, ability to help and work under others leadership..
Interview – amount of evidence/quality of examples. Ability to take on challenge; commitment to activities; attitude to setbacks; ability to compromise with cultural/religious differences.


Service Knowledge and Fitness assessment – good, above average, average, below average, poor.
Interview – reasons for joining; knowledge of career path/specialisation; ship recognition RM and RN knowledge;


In order to maintain their very high standards, the Royal Marines use a tough screening process to select Young Officers for training. However you have been selected to attend the POC because we think you have shown the qualities that suggest that you are capable of becoming a Royal Marines Officer.

There are 2 stages:

1. The Potential Officers Course
2. The Admiralty Interview Board

Candidates who pass the first stage are allowed to go forward to the second. Following successful completion of the Admiralty Interview Board, a Final Selection Board (which meets near the end of July) will decide who will be offered a RM Commission (this does not require candidates to be present).

Potential Officers Course (POC)

The POC is designed to see whether you are likely to meet the challenge. It is a gruelling test of your physical fitness, and we are assessing your determination and commitment.
But we are looking for a little more than that: your leadership potential and intelligence, how you communicate and whether you can keep a sense of humour even when exhausted. Can you think on your feet when the going gets tough?
The POC also gives you the opportunity to find out more about us. By the end, you will have had a taste of life as a Young Officer in training. It is also a unique chance to learn a lot about yourself and your strengths and weaknesses.

The POC takes place at the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM), Lympstone, Devon. The base is situated on the banks of the Exe estuary, 8 miles south-east of Exeter.
Courses run approximately twice a month throughout the year increasing in frequency between March and July. The POC lasts for 52 hours spread over 3 days from 0900 Monday to lunchtime Wednesday.

Before you arrive

You will receive comprehensive joining instructions 3 – 4 weeks prior to the course providing all administrative details and a rail warrant if you requested one. If you want to give your best on the POC, thorough preparation is vital. The POC DVD, available from your Careers Officer, will expand on all areas of the course outlined here.


0800 - Arrival

You are required to arrive at CTCRM no later than 0800 on Monday. Candidates are advised to turn up on the Sunday if travelling some distance. Take this initial opportunity to get to know other members of the course, since you will need to work as a team over the next 48 hours. Passing the POC is about meeting a standard – the standard demanded of a potential Royal Marines Officer – not competing with the others. You will be met by the Course Supervisor in the Mess at 0900 for an informal brief prior to the course commencing. Once you have been briefed by the Course Supervisor you will be issued with kit and then have your course photograph taken. This is followed by a presentation from the Course Officer detailing the content of the POC which you will experience over the following 2 days.

1145 – Royal Marines Fitness Assessment (RMFA)

You will move to the gymnasium to undertake the Royal Marines Fitness Assessment (RMFA). To begin with, the Physical Training Staff will brief you on the way you will be expected to conduct yourself during the RMFA. You will then begin the Assessment, which consists of the following (IMPORTANT: READ THE EXERCISE TECHNIQUES DETAILED BELOW AND TRAIN ACCORDINGLY) :

ï¬ Progressive Shuttle Run (the ‘Bleep’ Test) - You will run between 2 lines, 20 metres apart, at a pace dictated by bleeps, beginning at ‘level 1’. Each level has several ‘shuttles’ at the same pace and the pace quickens at the start of each new level. Although part of the overall RMFA, this test has a separate pass mark and you must keep up with the bleeps and reach level 11.0 as a minimum. A result of ‘level 15 shuttle 5’ will gain maximum points for the purposes of the RMFA. The first few levels serve as the warm-up for the Shuttle Run itself. Candidates must take care to wear non-slip trainers to aid turning at the end of each shuttle.

ï¬ Press-up Test – The duration of the test is 2 minutes, 60 press-ups will get you maximum points. The body must be kept straight at all times, the chest will be lowered to meet another student’s fist, you must then fully lock out the arms on the upward motion. Your hands will be shoulder width apart and your elbows must be kept into your side, poor form will result in you being stopped.

ï¬ Sit-up Test – Once again the test will last for 2 minutes, 85 repetitions will get you maximum points. Your feet will be held by a partner, your fingers must stay in contact with your temples and your elbows must make contact with the mat on the rearward motion and come up to touch the knees on the upward motion, your knees must be kept together, poor form will result in you being stopped.

ï¬ Pull-up Test – This exercise will be carried out on the wooden beam. You will adopt an “overhand grasp†your body will hang straight and then be pulled up until your chin is over the beam. The exercise will be done to the commands of “bend and stretch†this is to ensure strictness and prevent the use of momentum, you will be told to “drop off†if you do not stay in time. To gain maximum points you must achieve 16 repetitions.

All 4 RMFA tests have a maximum score of 100 points each. The overall RMFA pass mark is 180 out of 400 points (160 for RM Scholars). Any candidate scoring below 180 points on the overall RMFA will be withdrawn from the course.

1400 - Weapons Presentation

You will taken for a Specialist Weapons brief by a member of the POC team, you will also get a chance to have a ‘Hands on’ with some of the weapons displayed.

1530 – Essay and Interview

Next, the emphasis changes from physical to mental prowess, as you will write a short essay on a current affairs topic. You will be given a choice of at least two subjects, a time limit of 1 hour and a maximum of 2 sides of A4. What we are looking for – apart from accurate grammar and spelling – is your ability to reason, justify your arguments and communicate clearly on paper. Your knowledge of current defence related issues is important. As a Royal Marines Officer you could be involved in one of them, not just read about it in the papers. During the essay the Course Officer or Assisting Officer will take each candidate aside for a short individual interview. This will help them get to know you, assess your level of Corps knowledge and to find out why you want to join the Royal Marines as an Officer.


0720 – Confidence Tests & Bottom Field Session

After breakfast, you will be met by the Course Supervisor and taken for a thorough warm up prior to beginning the morning’s physical activities. You will then receive a demonstration of the “Commando slide†and “punch into the net†obstacles of the “Tarzan Assault Courseâ€. The course will then be expected to complete both obstacles, allowing the POC staff to gauge candidates’ confidence to operate effectively at heights. The course will then be led to the bottom field where they will receive a demonstration of how to tackle each obstacle on the Assault Course. On completion of the demonstration it will be your turn to do a ‘timed run’. Then you will be split into teams for the log race, where each team has to carry a log around the course without it touching the ground. For some of the obstacles, you will be the team leader, for others a team member – and on other obstacles there will be no leader designated. First you will have a short time in which to work out how you are going to tackle each obstacle. You will then have to brief your team clearly and positively before putting your plan into action. It will test your drive and assertiveness, how well you communicate under pressure, and how well you work as a team member when someone else is leading. Next you will undertake 2 Fireman’s carries – 200m in under 90 seconds and 100m in under 45 seconds.

You will then get cleaned up and eat a pasta lunch in the Officers’ Mess. After a strenuous morning you are encouraged to use this meal as an opportunity to fuel and fully hydrate your body prior to the afternoon’s activities. IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT YOU EAT AND DRINK AS MUCH AS YOU CAN THROUGHOUT THE COURSE, OTHERWISE YOUR BODY WILL RUN OUT OF FUEL.

1130 – Lecturette

For a Royal Marines Officer, the ability to communicate with others is vital. With this in mind, you will be expected to deliver a three-minute lecturette to your fellow course members in a classroom. The subject will be the same for all candidates – Yourself – and you will not be allowed to use visual aids during the lecturette. The lecturette is designed to allow the POC staff to assess your ability to articulate and project your views confidently to a small audience. Careful planning is needed to do yourself justice in only three minutes.

1230 – Endurance Course

Following another quick change you will be taken to the local training area on Woodbury Common, three miles from Lympstone, for the start of the Endurance Course at 1300 hrs. The course – one of the Commando Tests – consists of a run of six and a half miles over varying terrain. The first two and a half miles will be run as a group over rough ground, including water pools and 5 sets of tunnels. There will be regular pauses for an explanation of how to tackle each obstacle. This is followed by a ‘Hare and Hounds’ race over one mile, where you will attempt to catch up with a member of the Training Team running at the front of the group. The final three miles are conducted as a squad run through the lanes back to CTCRM at 8 minute mile pace, don’t be surprised if the pace quickens towards the end. The Endurance Course tests exactly what the title suggests. Throughout, you will have to show not just physical fitness but the mental desire to keep going despite increasing fatigue.

1530 – Discussion Exercise

The final assessed activity on the POC is the Discussion Exercise, which takes place back in the Officers’ Mess. Controversial and topical issues are put forward for the group to debate. You are expected to participate fully and explain the reasoning behind the comments you make and expand upon other members’ ideas. In this exercise we are observing your interpersonal skills – how you articulate your point of view, how you listen to others and how you react to someone who disagrees with you. Remember that if you do not become involved, it is difficult for us to form a view on your qualities in this area.

By 1630 the formally assessed phase of the course is complete. The rest of the afternoon and evening is spent cleaning the equipment you were issued on Monday and relaxing and enjoying the comforts of the Mess.

1800 – Drinks in the Officers’ Mess

Unless the Young Officer batch is training away from Lympstone, the second day ends with a chance to meet Young Officers currently under training. Over a drink or two in the Mess, they will tell you at first hand about the challenges and rewards of training. Make the most of the opportunity to talk to them. If you do, you will get more of a flavour of what might lie ahead if you pass the POC. After dinner the rest of the evening is free. It is wise to get an early night before the third day.


0800 – Battle Swimming Test

The first event of the final day is the Battle Swimming Test. Your performance in this test is not assessed; it is included in the POC so you can gain an insight into other physical aspects of training. Although swimming can be taught at CTCRM in training, it is beneficial for you to arrive with some ability particularly at breaststroke. If not a strong swimmer, a candidate should consider swimming lessons.

0900 – Presentations

Next follows a comprehensive presentation that concentrates on Royal Marines Young Officer training. You will also be briefed on Royal Marines careers, specialisations and methods of entry.

1030 – Final Interview

The POC ends with a final interview in which the Course Officer will give you your POC result. He will take you through your strengths and weaknesses as they have emerged over the past 48 hours, informing you whether:

- You have been recommended to attend AIB.

- You are advised to come back on another POC, for a further attempt, after a period of time.

- You have been assessed as unsuitable for a commission in the Royal Marines.

Whatever the outcome, you will receive a comprehensive brief from the Course Supervisor of your performance throughout the physical tests on the course. He will identify areas of strengths and weaknesses which will be used to formulate a future individual training programme.

After the interview, by about midday, you will be free to leave. However, you are welcome to stay for lunch.

By coming on a Potential Officers Course you will have had the chance to prove to us that you have got what it takes – the potential to become a Royal Marines Officer. But, just as important, you will have proved it to yourself. Do remember that despite the early emphasis on physical prowess, a career as a Royal Marines Officer is very much about your effective intellect.

Frequently asked questions

Q. Can I bring my own boots? NB: POC ONLY NOT PRMC.

A. Yes, so long as they are of a military style, have a substantial heel block and adequate ankle support. All boots will be checked on day one and military boots issued where required.

Q. Can I use visual aids for my lecturette?

A. No. The use of visual aids often results in candidates failing to engage effectively with the audience. We are trying to assess candidates’ ability to articulate and project their views to a small audience. Visual aids often provide a distraction to both the candidate and his audience.

Q. Will I automatically fail the course if I do not complete a test?

A. The POC exists to identify potential. The instructors will consider a candidate’s overall performance throughout the course, however there are a number of criteria tests: Level 11 on the “bleep testâ€, 180 (160 for scholars) on the RMFA, failure to complete one pull-up means it is unsafe to progress to Day 2, failure to conduct any of the high obstacle confidence tests, failure to complete the run back to camp after the endurance course. A candidate may fail the POC if he does not demonstrate the required levels of determination and motivation.

Q. Why do we need to carry our water bottles (issued at POC) all the time?

A. The physical intensity of the POC is such that it is essential to hydrate continuously. While dehydration can be of most concern in the warmer months, your body works best when it is fully hydrated whatever the time of year.

Q. Why has my Bleep Test result been lower than I have previously achieved at home/school?

A. Many Bleep Tests are run using cassette tapes that have become stretched over time. At the POC, only official Bleep Test CDs are used. Furthermore, the effect of candidates’ natural apprehension - before undertaking physical tests in a strange environment - should not be underestimated.
Hints and Tips

1. The POC is a hard physical test. Do not underestimate the fitness required before arriving. Complete at least one run per week in boots two months prior to your course to allow your legs chance to adapt. As well as training for the RMFA it is important to increase the distance you run to prepare for the Endurance Course, as you will be working continuously for about 2 hours, after already having completed a 2 ½ hr assault course session earlier in the day.

2. Be aware that running in boots is harder than in trainers. To run 8 min miles in boots, you must train at a faster pace in trainers – around 7 min mile pace.

3. Eat well before, during and after your training sessions, and especially when you are on course, as candidates have been known to collapse due to low blood sugar levels.

4. If you get an injury before the PO, let it heal properly. It is better to arrive slightly less fit and not injured than with an injury, as this may be exacerbated whilst at CTCRM.

5. Learn about the Royal Marines before you arrive. Consider it like any job interview – you will be expected to answer questions on the Royal Marines, Commando Units and jobs you are likely to do after joining.

“by failing to prepare you are preparing to failâ€
Abraham Lincoln

"I'm going for another lie down"
Ninja Stoker
Ten RM VCs, one of those a RM Commando, Corporal Thomas Peck Hunter, in Lake Cammachio in Italy, that VC is an amazing read, thoroughly deserved by that man.

Corps museum in Eastney is a good visit! "Meeting" the only woman Royal Marine less so, Hannah Snell, my god how ugly must she have been to pass as a Marine!


War Hero
Royal Marines VC's

1. Captain Edward Bamford
2. Lieutenant George Dare Dowell
3. Sergeant Norman Augustus Finch
4. Captain Lewis Stratford Tollemache Halliday
5. Major Francis John William Harvey
6. Corporal Thomas Peck Hunter
7. Major Frederick William Lumsden
8. L/Cpl Walter Richard Parker
9. Corporal John Prettyjohn
10. Bombardier Thomas Wilkinson

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