Royal Marines of 1 Assault Group Royal Marines (1AGRM) will soon be “storming through the fjords of Norway”, say the Ministry of Defence.

1AGRM’s 539 Assault Squadron Royal Marines and their raiding and landing craft are readying themselves for war games in Norway.

In total according to a release, six Offshore Raiding Craft, eight Inshore Raiding Craft and two Landing Craft Vehicle Personnel – having been loaded in the UK and transported by MV Hurst Point to Norway.

These craft give 539 ASRM the capacity to deliver a company and more of Royal Marines.

“As the UK’s riverine warfare specialists, 539 Assault Squadron Royal Marines (ASRM) has to perform in every environment in which the Royal Marines may be called to operate,” said Major Matt Baylis, Officer Commanding 539 ASRM.

“Dissected by enormous fjords, and with temperatures dropping as low as -40°c, the arctic region of northern Norway offers unique challenges to the Royal Marines Landing Craft and their Crews. Manoeuvre from the sea is a key component of the Marines’ skillset, and the geography of this region means that our raiding craft can offer troops unparalleled access to NATO’s northern flank.

Over the coming weeks, the Commandos of 539 ASRM will refresh their extreme cold weather skills, ensuring the amphibious manoeuvre of the Royal Marines.”

1AGRM’s deployment to the region is essential in ensuring the amphibious mobility of the Royal Marines in the Arctic environment, say the MoD.

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captain P Wash.

“Royal Marines train for War Games” .

Surely that should say, “Royal marines Train for War” ?

Cam Hunter

Yeah they just like playing games now, but professional games.


Yeah coz we are always at war in cold places!!! Is there a strategic defence review coming up????? Bet that’s a cheap ex to run!!!!!


Aside from the vehicles/craft what equipment are they packing? Any anti air/tank etc or just guns and mortars


I am a great admirer of the R.M. However what will a few commandos do to stop the nasty ruskies come over Northern Norway. Not a lot. As with most things run by the MOD, we have some good people and some good kit, but we dont have enough of anything to be a real deterrent. Even our most expensive gold plated £1billion each destroyer ( and we use it to stop yobs on speed boats?) has no offensive surface weapons, bar a pop gun, and we have to rely on foreign partners to do the dirty work. I am… Read more »

captain P Wash.

In my Experience, John, The RM Lads would Kick up one hell of a storm.

Robert Blay

Well at least we have our gold plated T45, cos no bugger else has. I wish we had 10-12, but 6 is better then none at all.

Robert Blay

7.5k Royal Marines can seriously spoil sombodys day. But the RM wouldnt be fighting the Russians alone would they. They would be used to fight or hold a particular strategic choke point, not invade Moscow single handed. Just like they did with the al faw peninsula for op Telic 2003

captain P Wash.



I’ve done quite a lot of war reading but must admit I’ve never read a scenario where the Allied Commander (North) said “Hey, we’ll just let this company of Royal Marines win the war against 10 divisions of enemy Troops while we go off on our holidays in Ibiza”.

But you live and learn 🙂

David Steeper

dadsarmy. Cynical, sarcastic and true. Love it.

Rfn Weston

Norway isn’t Ukraine or Georgia. The Ruskies wouldn’t be coming anywhere easily. Invading Norway would be a terrible miscalculation. Air cover from the U.K. would surely be a possibility? Rough range of Typhoon T1 is 1800 miles… linear flight line to northern Norway is 1000 miles… not sure how that calculates to loiter time but as Robert says, tactically deployed as part of a larger stategic effort they are capable of kicking some serious teeth in. I was attahced to 3 Commando Brigade. Serious soldiers.

Steve Taylor

Royal Marines train for Arctic? What next? Booty fights with rollmats?

Nigel Collins

Interesting to see Australia purchasing the MRH90 for SOF operations.
I wonder if this would be a good fit for the marines?

Mike Mortimore

Royal Marines have spent every year from January to March in the Arctic when I served, 45 Commando RM were the primary arctic trained Commando with 42 also trained. The nature of our drafting system meant that every marine got to experience artic training. Plus the 3 Commando Helicopter Sqns.
The story mentioned here is just one element of the Corps in training. I served for 25 years, of which 7 yeaRd was as a Landing Craft Coxswain.


Around 100 marines are training in fjords of Norway. This both cheers and saddens me. It’s great that our lads have got top notch kit and are continuing to undergo world beating training, It’s sad that there are only 100. I have been doing a lot of research into how many combat armed front line troops we actually have and I’m getting closer and closer to the answer of “depressingly few”. I appreciate this is a problem for most modern militarys, and I also appreciate how crucial the support troops are, but I firmly believe we are significantly below our… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

Nice post John. Correction on Commando’s. As it gets even worse. The teeth of 3 commando that could be deployed into Norway are only 2 “battalions” now. 40 and 45 Commando. 42 is now used as a specialist MCT unit with many varied roles, no longer available to 3 Commando as a line unit. Mortars, GPMG and other heavier kit removed, along with manpower, which was redistributed as part of RN manning crisis. Supporting elements – UKLF CSG is the “HQ” Regiment, with signals, air defence the BRF ( used to be mountain and arctic warfare cadre, and the RM… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

The “Stand Off Companies” were a product of Commando 2020.

They engage with longer range weapons, like a Fire Support company in an army Infantry Battalion. ( 81mm, GPMG, .50 cal, Javelin ) Two each Commando. One would be equipped with Viking, the other wheeled vehicles.

So all would still engage, not just the two “Close Combat” Companies.


Brilliant, great posts. Thanks Dan. I find it painful trying to get my head around it all. Cheers JohnG


You don’t happen to know any good books/ sources for this sort of thing?


You couldn’t recommend a good book or we source for this sort of thing could you? No worries if not.

Daniele Mandelli

No idea on books. I have so many I know longer buy them.

Just do lots of research on the net, and don’t believe everything you read on the official Mod pages, as they are often out of date and only give a brief outline.

I also believe there are ex RM on UKDJ who can comment better than I ever could.



Its been a longtime since 1975 – 1999.
Served with 359ASRM. There were 14 of us in 1982. NOW well i am the last. I miss them all and have a hard time with nightmares BUT GOD HELP ANYONE WHO WHO GETS ON THE WRONG SIDE OF THEM. BROTHER’S ALL.

David Steeper

John. The problem is the same to a lesser or greater extent with all the services. As far as everyone else thinks they exist to provide the maximum war fighting capability possible. As far as the services themselves think they exist to provide as many cushy non-jobs for their people in general and the Ruperts in particular as possible. The Navy is bad, the Army is worse and the RAF is horrific.


Personally I very much doubt if there are any Rupert’s left in the Army but maybe I can be corrected? And yes I would love to see a LARGE contingent of RN Marines go on exercise in Norway, instead of a 100. I do take the point about the many senior ranks in the UK services, as compared to the Israeli forces, or the US Marines. It does seem we are spending more and more money for less and less capability. A £90 million aircraft can only be in one place, whereas if we had three or four we could… Read more »


Hi John only picking up on the last point really, yes you can have more F16s for the price but most nations are replacing them, even the US are placing more with air national guard and in reserve. Yes the US navy are keeping a fair number of F/A18s but that mainly seems to be because of F35C delivery/testing speeds, as a post initial strike option and the fact they can easily act as refuelling buddies, when I last checked they still send up a 18 up at the start of every recovery phase. I believe they will be keeping… Read more »

Mark Forsyth

Are you sure that this news report is correct.
According to the AIS tracking website, MV Hurst Point was on its way to Belize as at the 29th Jan.