The weekend had been and gone in a flash and it was time to crack on with Exercise Second Empire; a five day exercise on Braunton Burrows in North Devon, following a quick bottom field session of course.  After a 1 ¾ hour nap on the coach (always a bonus) we awoke at location.  We were not quite on site yet so there was a section race, carrying a casualty to the team location.  After moving into a harbour, the first night consisted of going out on a recce patrol of potential enemy locations.


Day 2 started in quite a relaxed fashion with a walk through – talk through on section attacks with our section corporals.  We then moved on to putting it into practice and going out on section attacks against enemy.  We all got through it and returned to the harbour, albeit with wet feet.  Tuesday night saw more recces for a Troop attack on Wednesday morning.  We were up early for orders from the Troop Commander (time to peel your ears back).  We completed rehearsals and stepped off under the navigational prowess of Paylor.  H hour came and the attack went fairly smoothly; all enemy dead.


Another night came and another set of recces for an ambush – another middle of the night set of orders followed by rehearsals and the ambush itself – lying in the cold for a few hours but ambush successful.


Thursday was spent with some recces and OPs and a few probing attacks on our harbour.  Friday rocked up quickly, as usual, and the last set of orders was given for a Troop attack.  We were guided in by 4 section.  H-Hour came and we were on, quickly sweeping through the position – although the enemy were seemingly in the wrong place which threw the plan slightly.


All that was left was the yomp back; six miles with bergans.  Due to the route being waterlogged we seemed to cross some of the steepest sand dunes in the area before finally arriving at Royal Marines Chivenor after an everlasting walk along the perimeter fence.  Then back onto the coach and the ‘comfort’ of CTC.






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