History

The origins of the modern day Commando Training Centre can be traced back to 1939, when the Corps expanded prior to the Second World War, resulting in the original camp being built for the training of reservists, and initially called the Royal Marines Reserve Depot.

The origins of the modern day Commando Training Centre can be traced back to 1939, when the Corps expanded prior to the Second World War, resulting in the original camp being built for the training of reservists, and initially called the Royal Marines Reserve Depot.

By November that year staff had begun to form training teams at the new camp, formerly part of the estate of Sir Francis Drake, and by late January 1940 the first of many thousands of Royal Marines arrived at the depot for training.

On 5 September 1941 the camp was renamed Depot Royal Marines Lympstone and at its peak was training 800 Royal Marines a month for war service. During this period a second camp at nearby Dalditch in Budleigh Salterton was home to the Royal Marines Infantry Training Centre (RMITC), which was responsible for the second phase of training. In 1943 training was extended from six to eight weeks and in 1944 the package expanded further to 18 weeks.  At the end of the war, the Army could no longer spare infantry for the specialist amphibious role, and it fell naturally to the Royal Marines with the establishment of 3 Commando Brigade to maintain the capability. The Commando School at Archnacarry in Scotland closed with the responsibility transferring to the Royal Marines Training Group at Tywyn in Wales.

During the 1960s the majority of the Corps' specialist infantry training, command and communication courses, and virtually all other aspects of Commando Training held at Bickleigh camp, near Plymouth, were relocated to Lympstone. A major building programme commenced and the first of the new accommodation blocks was opened on 12 July 1963. In 1970 the camp was finally renamed The Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM).

Throughout the 1970s work continued to shape Lympstone into a centre of military excellence with a swimming pool and gymnasium complex, Medical Centre, indoor range, lecture complex and even its own railway station being constructe.

The Commando Training Centre at Lympstone has seen many changes since 1939, although it still retains one of the old wooden huts as a mark of respect to the pioneers of World War Two.

In the 1990s the ability of commanders to recognise the need for change and implement it in an efficient and effective manner has led to the creation of a well balanced and inter-dependent unit at Lympstone ready to face the future. Having embraced the concept of Output Budget Management and Resource Accounting and Budgeting, CTCRM can accurately forecast and manage both training and administrative budgets.

Today CTCRM provides for all aspects of new entry training and continuation courses within one establishment, ensuring the highest standards are maintained, so guaranteeing the Royal Marines Command has personnel for its major manoeuvre element, 3 Commando Brigade Royal Marines and other operational units.