146 TROOP TRAINING DIARY – WEEK 31
After a successful week carrying out section attacks safely on Field Firing Exercise one (FFX1) we started FFX2. This included firing the Underslung Grenade Launcher. 146 Troop’s morale was high. It was the last week of field training but from now on it was Troop level attacks, advancing to contact and deliberate attacks. We were eager to prove to the training team that we knew how to take part in Troop level attacks and safely showing them that we were ready to take our place in a Commando Unit. Monday morning we were back on Dartmoor Training Area ready to conduct our first Troop level attack. We would advance to contact across the moor ready to attack. For this evolution we were using blank rounds so we could get the mechanics of how the attack would happen – lead by our OC. 1 and 2 sections led the attack with 3 and 4 sections as fire support and the reserve section. The attack went well with 146 Troop showing good communication and movement.
Each morning started with some Troop phys led by our Section Corporal before a day of hard work and live firing. The next evolution was a deliberate attack with live rounds. 3 section and 1 section were fire support using the Light Machine Guns or the General Purpose Machine Guns. 4 section were the assaulting section with 2 section acting as reserve but also gave fire support. The attack went well with everyone displaying good safe drills which pleased our training team. That night we would be conducting a live advance to contact. Dusk came, 146 Troop geared up for the night evolution. A sense of excitement was with the Troop as we prepared for the attack. 4 section along with 3 section were fire support while 1 and 2 sections took out the positions.
The final attack on FFX2 was on the agenda for the next day. 146 Troop were 2 hours of hard and safe work away from completing recruit training with only this and the King’s Squad week coming between them from becoming a Royal Marines Commando. All sections were used to attack different positions, as always throughout the entire field firing exercise the Troop displayed good efficient drills, fire positions and most of all were safe! ENDEX, all positions had been taken and it was time to clear up. The Troop had completed all of recruit training with only the King’s Squad week to complete. Everyone was happy that they had got through FFX2. What made it even more pleasing was the range manager said he had not seen the targets hit as much as the Troop had done throughout the week.
As of Friday afternoon 146 Troop became the King’s Squad with much excitement as we had our King’s Squad party that weekend. It was held at Exeter Golf and Country Club where we had good food, plenty of drinks, presentations and got to watch our Troop video. We were lucky to have such a good venue provided to us thanks to our training team, who went the extra mile to make this an enjoyable and memorable night, which it certainly was. The moment came when we finally got presented our green beret by our inspirational Troop Commander who certainly made us EARN our green beret which the Troop would have no other way. A moment you will not forget! It was a good night and we will always remember it, the only thing that is between us is King’s Squad and the pass out parade, hard work is still to come…