Cadets Wearing RM commando Dagger

I am going to be starting marines commando training soon after completing the course would I be eligible as a cadet to wear the RM dagger badge on my uniform as it says personal can wear it and its ranks the same as JL so I’m confused as to wether or not cadets can wear it or just CFAV.

The wider question here should be, once you have joined the marines, should you still be a cadet, or instead be a Service Instructor?


I’m sure there’s something about not being able to be in cadets and regular forces at the same time. The back of the old 3822s had 'joining regular forces’ as a possible reason for cadets leaving. Or something did at least.

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Just had a look. JSP 814 states cadets can’t simultaneously be members of the regular or reserve forces. If you join up, you are no longer a cadet.


Yeah thought so. I’ve only seen one cfav FS wearing a commando dagger patch in MTP.

Once your RM service is done, if you decide to join the RAFAC as a CFAV then you will be able to continue wearing the red dagger when in MTP

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In theory, you could join at 16, pass the commando course super young, quit, fudge a rejoin to the ATC and wear your dagger until 20?

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Apparently someone did that with para wings and maroon beret. He got injured after passing the course so rejoined ATC or something silly like that. Might be a complete myth.

Almost certainly, because you can’t wear a maroon beret unless you are currently attached to the airborne forces.
Wings are a qualification. The Maroon beret is not.


You’ve got to pass the RM Basic and Commando training first to earn your dagger and green beret, mate: all 30 weeks of it, with plenty of opportunities of either injuring yourself or just not coming up to standard in many other aspects of the course - not just in fitness, but marksmanship, field training or even drill assessments. I wouldn’t count your chickens until they’ve hatched.

The failure rate is bad enough even in regular units, let alone the elite of the British forces.

I joined the Royal Engineers from the ATC in 1984: 39 out of our training troop of 67 passed out 11 weeks later from basic training. In 1989 I re-enlisted in the RAF Regt: 16 out of 24 passed out after 12 weeks trade training.

Looking back on it, most of the non-hackers who left the Army or RAF during basic or trade training didn’t do so because they couldn’t come up to the standards of the various training tests: they couldn’t take the imposed discipline and routine of military life. That included ex-reserve forces people and cadets: people who had some previous experience of the armed forces.:roll_eyes::v:


That applies only to those soldiers who serve on airborne and commando units having done the All Arms pre-para and commando courses in order to join them. When they are posted back to regular units, they aren’t allowed to wear maroon and green berets anymore.

Infantry Paras and Marines wear their berets no matter what unit they serve with, such as exchange postings. The RAF Regt has a SNCO platoon Sgt exchange with the RM and Parachute Regiment. The RAF Regt NCO has to attend and pass the relevant All Arms course before the exchange posting can begin.

True - but that was when we still had 22 year old CWOs

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Talking about non-hackers - when I joined the RAF we had three basic training flights of 50 recruits at RAF Swinderby for six weeks’ basic training in our intake. Four weeks into the course we were amalgamated into two flights of fifty for the passing out parade training phase. 150 recruits down to 100! :crazy_face:

I remember this because the barrack blocks there had three storeys, each with four 14 man rooms. The top floor was therefore emptied of remaining recruits who filled in the gaps of the other two flights.

The normal Swinderby routine was to have intakes every two weeks, with every other one having two flights of female trainees. But then the RAF of the 1980s was three times the size it is now. :thinking:

Pah - 1976 - H blocks - Lino floor that had to be buffed with yukky liquid polish. As an enterprising ex-cadet, I went to Tech Stores & got some very large tins of solid wax polish - quoting the DI’s name - Cpl Sweet!

I got a telling off then congratulations for having the room with the best floor!

During our tenure, there was a huge outbreak of ‘flu - the new blocks were used as sick wards before new recruits got to use them!

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I am sure you will find the RAF did not recruit Women in the 1980s. The RAF did not start recruiting women until 1994. OZ! the pedantic :innocent:


That was a moot point with my trade in those days: they didn’t open it up for women until 2016, along with the army infantry and - back to topic - the Royal Marines!

Although there were female R(Aux)AF Regt gunners on air defence units (as opposed to field i.e. infantry squadrons) for a time in the '80s and '90s, until the RAF lost its self-contained air defence. Because there isn’t going to be another 1940-style campaign in Europe ever again, is there? :roll_eyes:

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