190 Troop Diary – Week 14
Monday – The beginning of the week started off fairly slowly. We started with a double period on bottom field which turned slightly nasty when people were being caught not keeping their feet moving – a big no-no for bottom field. For the rest of the day we just had dental appointments and functional skills.
Tuesday – Continuing the fairly slow pace we had a whole day of signals lectures (all of which we had to share the lecture room with the band troop[there are girls in the Royal Marine Band service, and they’re hoofing!]) Not the most interesting lectures we’ve attended but we learnt quite a lot when it came to communicating on radios. In the evening we had our pre-field inspection for Baptist Run.
Wednesday – Things started picking up today – we started with a 4 mile speed march carrying our rifles and webbing with 21lb. Nothing too difficult, you just do your best to keep the pace with the PTI. After that we deployed to Woodbury Common for Exercise BAPTIST RUN. However when we got there we only managed to complete a stalk and a night NAVEX as the fog made the visibility very poor.
Thursday – We woke up and conducted our first field kit inspection and carried on with all the criteria parts of the exercise as the visibility had improved today. Stalking, FCO’s, target indication, map reading and observation. We also did an additional night NAVEX. This one was considerably more difficult though and about half the troop got lost and ended up in completely the wrong place.
Friday – After setting up for our next kit muster, only 3 people who still needed to pass were inspected and everyone else packed their kit away so we could get another stalk in. Once the stalk was completed we started preparing for our CFT back to camp. The pace on the 8 miles back was considerably faster than our 8 mile load carry from Exercise BAPTIST WALK. Again most of the troop completed this with no real problems at all.
Saturday – We had our post field inspection that morning. This was to show we knew how to de-service all our field kit and get it ready to deploy again. Most of us had been up for a long time the previous evening to get everything done. We were all quite excited to get it out the way because then Ex BAPTIST RUN would officially be over. However, when we got back to the accommodation we found out that some of our rooms had not been cleaned properly so we had our Saturday taken off us and did several quick uniform changes. We then had to prepare a kit muster by our beds and have our beds immaculate for 2000 that evening.
Sunday – That morning we had another set of rounds with all our clothes on our bed spaces to show we had labelled them correctly. If we passed we got to go ashore if we didn’t we had to stay on camp all day. We also had another inspection at 2000 that evening too.
Overall it wasn’t the highest tempo week for the troop but as a whole people were quite stressed as it was almost all criteria and no one wanted to leave the troop.
190 Troop Diary – Week 15
190 Troop approached week 15 with eager anticipation. Having just come off Ex BAPTIST RUN we were all nervous about how we had faired during the final test that phase one of training had to offer. The news finally arrived and it allowed most of the troop to breathe a sigh of relief. Unfortunately it was going to be the end of the road for four members of the Troop. The rest of us started looking forward to getting our green belts on and getting stuck into the tactical phase of training. First though we were all going to enjoy our final week in phase 1.
Death by lectures is what we had all heard on the nod vine. A week of classroom work, bottom field and drill turned out to be just what 190 Troop needed. A chance to recover from what had been arguably one of the most stressful weeks of training we had had so far. Not that you can ever really relax during Royal Marine Commando training we gave it our best shot while still trying to learn the intricacies of putting radios together during signals training. Day after day we all struggled to get our heads around radio voice procedure. Being carefully not to speak out of turn and trying to remember what seemed like 100 different callsigns.
Soon enough the end of the week had rolled around. With our long weekend within sight all we had to get through was our phase 1 passout parade. For most of us all that we needed to do for this was stand still and for some of the troop it meant performing drill in front of some very important people to collect our awards. Ranging from the section IC’s being selected to the PT superiors marching up for a well done and a handshake. It went well overall, although some of us need to drastically improve our marching. Away everyone went finally for a well earned rest before the start of phase 2 and our next Exercise – FIRST BASE.