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The Royal Marines and the UK amphibious capability web forum

Defence Committee

Recent reports suggested that the Government is considering changes to the amphibious capability of the Royal Navy and the Royal Marines as part of the ongoing National Security Capability Review. The House of Commons Defence Committee invited members of the public to share their views on the potential impact of these changes.

The Defence Committee asked for public views on the following questions:

  • How important is the amphibious capability provided by the Royal Marines and Albion class ships to the UK?
  • What is the likely impact on unit morale and satisfaction with Service life if the reported changes and reductions are implemented?
  • What is the likely impact on the communities where these capabilities are based if the reported changes and reductions are implemented?

Deadline for submission to the web forum was Thursday 21 December 2017.

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954 Contributions (since 27 November 2017)
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Total results 954 (page 12 of 96)

Margaret Charters

05 December 2017 at 18:07

Amphibious capability is vital now and Jon the future and we cannot depend on Europe if we need ships having got rid of ours. We need both the ships and marines and have cut too much already

Keith Stanton

05 December 2017 at 17:44

The Royal Marines and the UK Ampibiuos Capabilty, provided the UK Government with a political influence tool, whereby, the amphibious fleet can sit off the coastline of areas of crisis and project, or threaten to project, power from over the horizon. This strategic asset is then capable of self sustaining itself during operations, through a beachhead, for over thirty days and projecting operations from the litteral inlana d. To lose this Amphibious capability would reduce the UKs ability to influence world afairs and provide humanitarian aid in times of Global crisis. The Royal Marines special bond and operational relationship with the USMC strengthens the UK abilty to cooperate on the Global stage and above its perceived capability. The Royals Marines continued contribution to the manpower strength of the UKs Special Forces highlights their training excellence and value for money. Amphibious operations are a strategic asset that require dedicated surface platforms to launch manpower, weapons and equipment from the sea to shore, by sea and air, and a highly trained fighting force that is trained in amphibious assault, and capable of prolonged and arduous, sustained operations. Therefore, the UK governemnt should invest in its Amphibious capability and the Royal Marines.


05 December 2017 at 16:19

Quite honestly, the Royal Marines & the Royal Navy need *more* funding, not less, and that Parliament might even be considering reducing their effectiveness says much about short memories at Westminster. Consider David Cameron's Strategic Defence Review, which was followed shortly after by the civil war in Libya. This was an unplanned event that required the use of the British armed forces - is there anyone, anywhere in the world, that is so prescient as to be able to accurately predict whether we will or will not require the amphibious capabilities of the Royal Marines & Royal Navy in the next few years? Of course not. If there are savings to be made, make them out of the Foreign Aid budget. It will be trivially simple to announce that in a manner that (a) fires up Tory voters, and (b) cuts at least some of the legs out from under the bleeding heart, bien-pensant lunatics that comprise the modern Left.

Martin Bishop

05 December 2017 at 16:09

Firstly, let me start by saying to have to even write this demonstrates what a very sad state of affairs this is. When we as a country should be screaming for increases in our navy and military, not fighting to keep what little we have left. Our politicians seem to have no interest in our military or its importance, because the media shows such little interest and the bulk of the general public are only concerned when something goes wrong. Secondly it worth noting I have no military experience, I don’t live near Portsmouth. Nor do work for the Royal Navy or MOD. But as a little boy I watched with pride back in the 80’s when our fleet retook the Falklands. That stayed with and since then when something Navy related came on TV, I watched with interest. But as the years rolled on our military, under the smokescreen of reviews, has been cut cut cut. Even someone with my limited knowledge can see that we have cut way beyond what we should have after the Cold War ended. So in direct to responder to the scrapping of Albion and Bulwark: These ships are vital, we must be prepared for whatever life throws at us. NATO is not what it once was, the USA is looking to the Pacific, we are leaving the EU. We need to be able to defend the UK ourselves. These ships are not just a couple of mine hunters that we at least have a few of and can replace fairly quickly, these ships are the centre piece of our amphibious force and vital to the Royal Marines, can the Government not see that? With the ridiculously stupid scrapping of HMS Ocean, without a replacement, I thought we would at least have both Albion and Bulwark at full readiness - not look to scrap them both. It’s like a bad joke. The fact that we have more high-tech ships than in the past is true, but a ship can only be in one place at a time, if HMS Queen Elisabeth is half way around the globe, the fact she can be used for the marines will be a fat lot of good if she is too far away. We are stretched so thin as it is. The Royal Marines themselves are a source of pride for the country they have proved themselves invaluable in conflict after conflict. If nothing else, they and the ships are an important deterrent and symbol of “Global” UK. These ships are essential to humanitarian aid, look what happened this hurricane season – if the defence budget can’t pay, then use some of the over inflated aid budget to pay for them. Or make the treasury, rightly, pay for Trident. We cannot be saying we will go to the French if we need help, what if they are using their amphibious ships or it is not in their political interest to let us use them for certain things? And why should we have to. Ships are more complex than they once were, taking years to construct. If something happens once these ships are gone we can’t just regenerate overnight. Look at what happened with the Nimrod fiasco. The 12 then 6 Type 45s. We don’t have a good track record. If we lose these ships morale will fall and it will send the wrong message about so called “Global Britain” and to our enemies. But there seems to me to be farther reaching repercussions here. If we lose any more ships people will question if we need Portsmouth and Plymouth. If that were to happened it would be devastating, for which ever city loses its base. I can’t comment on the impact to military families, but they should never have to face the threat of our forces being reduced in the first place. To sum up, what we should be doing is maintaining and expanding the fleet with a proper plan in place to replace aging ships. So not only should we keep HMS Albion and Bulwark, they both should be at full readiness (apart from refit time) and we should be looking to the future replacements for both ships. Our politicians are failing this country, they justify cuts with little sound bites and claims of how many ships we are building whilst cutting left right and centre, destroying capability and morale to save relatively small sums. If, god forbid, something happens in 2, 5 or 10 years’ time and we find ourselves in a mess because we have cut so many vital assets to save relatively small sums, then I truly hope the short sighted politicians responsible for the travesty of the decimation of our military are held to account.

Sue Clapson

05 December 2017 at 14:21

Having a husband who has served for the defence of our country and my father having been in the Royal Navy with my father in law having been a Royal Marine, I fully appreciate any strong defence in this worrying world of today. When I see how much of my tax money is thrown around the world before due consideration being made to a strong defence this I find very worrying for my children and grandchildren and future generations of our country.

Chris Roland

05 December 2017 at 13:37

If you want peace, prepare for war. We are stripping our defence forces and need to spend more! We are an island nation and need a capable Royal Navy. How important are the Royal Marines and Albion class ships to the UK? How do you think that having fewer Royal Marines since 2010 and more recent changes in numbers have affected the Corps? Do you think that further changes will affect supporting units within 3 Commando Brigade? What do you think the impact has been of having one of the two Albion class ships at extended readiness, so that only one is available for deployment? What could UK Armed Forces do to match the capabilities that might be lost? Are the alternatives good enough? Are there enough exercises and training to keep amphibious capability at high readiness? What do you think will happen to unit morale and satisfaction with Service life if the reported changes and reductions happen? What do you think will happen to the communities where these capabilities are based if the reported changes and reductions happen? We should be building more ships in British Shipyards to create jobs, build up our manufacturing basis and increase our RN capability. More not Less. Its penny pinching politics that meant we were unprepared for WW2. Peace is a luxury we can I'll afford to loose. We cannot magic up ships over night. Do not let me down.

James Neale

05 December 2017 at 13:07

These cuts have gone far enough. Sometimes keeping a capability is more important. The R.M. need these vessels and to get rid of them would mean yet another downgrading of our ability to protect ourselves or our allies should the need arise.

Alan Eaton

05 December 2017 at 13:02

it is important that we keep as much capiblity in our whole armed forces as possible loosing marines and albian class ships would be unaccepable unless another class ship isnt built to replace them it would weaken plymouth dock yard with the lost of there biggest ships with the subs moving to scotland would only leave a few frigates. job would be lost with that jobs outside dockyard lost as well. it would be far better to loose raf infantry units and army to take over the guarding of airfields. and keeping the marines to bridge gap of lost of army personel on front line. if new class of ship built to replace current ones would be fine to loose them but they would need to be on lines of mistral class or hms ocean. will bring helicopter and amphibious ship together could also bring disaster releaf and hosiptal ship together as well so if built big enough and 2 was made could really replace both albian class ship, rfa argus and hms ocean so crews would be saved 2 ships for the price of 4. sorry about my spelling i also have other throught about military savings if intrested

Phyllis M Lloyd

05 December 2017 at 12:29

Having served in the WRNS for three years I am horrified that we have seen services eroded on a massive scale. Indeed in the media today we are told that the French have offered us use of their vessels for our Marines to train on? I did not believe my eyes! We are an island race and need the protection of naval ships in these ever increasingly dangerous times. Why can the Government not see this yet is intent on spending billions on Overseas Aid. The public will not forgive them I am sure.

Nigel Hawkins

05 December 2017 at 12:26

There is no more efficient and cost-effective way of delivering either an armed response or humanitarian aid than assault ships of the Albion class. The natural units for these deployments are the Royal Marines, who are well trained and recognised as one of the most capable fighting forces in the world. With their great history and esprit de corps, it is vital that they should be maintained at a viable size. To have one Albion available for deployment is enough, provided that another is kept at extended readiness.

Total results 954 (page 12 of 96)