History of Commando Tests

Discussion in 'The Corps' started by Taffd, Aug 29, 2010.

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  1. Hi All,

    Does anybody have any idea of the history of said tests, such as what they were and when they changed/evolved.

    I know for example that at Achnacarry, they didn't do a 30-miler and the speed marches were of 15/16 miles, but I don't know the full extent of the tests there.

    I've heard that the 30-miler was introduced after the Falklands, though I'm not sure.

    So, anybody got any info on 'em? I ask purely as a matter if interest.
  2. The 30 miler was introduced long before the Falklands, if you wish to find out more got to the Once a Marine website, there are people there that can help you.
  3. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

  4. Well,

    Thanks so far. Visited 'Once a Marine', unfortunately the info doesn't appear to be available there.

    Tried the museum site aswell, not found it there yet either, though I did find one excerpt from a 1987 book concerning the tests, that I liked:-

    '30ft Rope Climb - no time limit (obviously, if it's not done in a few
    minutes, the man falls off)'
  5. I did my Commando Tests so long ago all the commands were in Afrikaans! :lol:

    My Test week was in December '79 and consisted of,
    9 Mile Speed March.
    12 Mile Load Carry.
    30ft Rope Climb, on rope climbing frames.
    Tarzan/Assault Course.
    Regain over tank.
    Endurance Course.
    30 Miler.
    As all the Training Team of my Troop had also undergone all these tests it can be assumed that the format had been like that from at least the early 70s.
  6. http://civviestreet.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=trg&action=display&thread=12327 Might interest you in terms of "evolving".


  7. And of course those other little (non Commando) tests... :D :D

    6 miler (thought that was harder than the 9 miler)!
    Endurance, Tarzan Assault course..........just for fun.

    Oh how we laughed...Middle of June 74!
  8. Oh yes, I laughed too when my Section Commander Cpl D*#@n informed me that despite passing the Endurance course, I would have to go out again on Re-run Saturday.
    Why? I'd missed one of the runs due to having an infected pus ridden hand thanks to some rusty barded wire on Holdfast!
    CNUT! :evil:
  9. Not a non- commando test as such but my favourite non- syallabus moment was being doubled round camp to return some matresses to stores (our accom was the Old Sick Bay) by a Cpl C*> who was rear ranking on our course (RFCC).

    All tests and re-runs had been completed and it was the day before presentation, the lads' feet were in bits, totally unnecessary. Got sorted on the troop end of course run ashore when half way through proceedings when he was half cut we dragged him down an alley, bound him head to toe with maskers and dumped him head first in a large bin. The commotion attracted the attention of a PC who was dissuaded from investigating further down the alley by our worse for wear OC insisting that there was, "nothing to worry about just a little end of course high spirits".
  10. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    Talk about laughing, how I giggled when the red house brick was shoved down my chest next to my skin when I started the endurance course for my test, silly me had a sip of water from my water bottle so needed punishing, I handed it back at the 30 yard range.
  11. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    Back to the original question, I cannot answer it definatley but you should be able to read between the lines and kind of come up with a start date for the formalisation of commando training.

    In 1947 reducing the cost of the armed forces and to reduce taxes etc the Corps had it's part to play, it was reorganised. Instead of the geographical areas of command the Newman Commitee suggested a functional basis to the command structure instead. This was implimented. Chatham got pay, records, drafting and NCO promotions. Portsmouth got all aspects of Naval training including amphibious. Plymouth got all military training, including infantry.

    Enter Bickliegh, from 1949 the Plymouth division was responsible for Commando training. Lympstone moved to Plymouths command in 1947 but I believe bickliegh was the home of the commando aspect of recruit training until 1954 when it was shifted to Lympstone (which was doing the other aspects of training). I'd make a guess that the Commando tests that we see today were formalised whilst the training was at Bickliegh, some time in '49/50
  12. Joined in Nov '71 and the first 6 weeks were at Deal. Such fun, 'sauntering' along the shingle beach on a Winter's day ! The tests had been around for a long time, and everyone serving at that time had completed the 30 Miler.
    Anyone remember the '5-3' club ?
  13. For some reason I never got to the 53 in training..but when I was there with 41 it became a regular haunt!
  14. My Uncle became an Army Commando in June 1944,IIRC, and the first test was the run from Spean Bridge train station in less than hour to Achnacarry(spelling) carrying 36lb of kit which I think included rifle,about 7.5 miles, unfortunately he is no longer with us so cannot ask anymore.
  16. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    Oh Hell....

    You were on it as well?...... :laughing2: :shock:
  17. Didnt you know my surname was Mac?? ;-)
  18. JC was the main instigator, think it had something to do with him being 36 when he passed out - old git!

    The Cpl in question was a Chatham rank, will pass you the name next time we coincide online.

    Back on thread, fireman's carry missing from NZB's list.

  19. Evening Timex,
    Same here. Wasn't until I went back to Deal a couple of years later (to play rugby) that I entered that mystical place. I heard there was an abortive raid on the Wrens block that morning too, planned by a couple of 42's Troop Sergeants.
  20. If its the same bloke I remember trying to explain to him in the Dear Leap that I wasn't actually drinking because it was the start of test week the following day. Complete knob if I remember rightly and J.C being the way he is he dished out justice only the way he knows!! Painfully with maximum embarassment!! ;-)

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