COLOURFUL  ENGLAND

Commando Memorial

 

 

Commando Memorial

The Commandos 1940-45

In the summer of 1940 when Britain’s fortunes in World War II

were at their lowest ebb and an enemy invasion was threatened

Winston Churchill boldly ordered the raising of an elite force to raid

the enemy-held coastline of Europe and regain the initiative.

The new units, which initially consisted of volunteers from the

regiments and corps of the British Army were called ‘Commandos’.

 

Within weeks they were in action in Europe later in the Middle East

and the Far East. During the next five years they fought in every

theatre of war with such success that the word ‘Commando’ became

feared by the enemy – yet respected by friendly forces.

 

In 1942 the Commando Basic Training Centre was established in the

Scottish Highlands at Achnacarry. There potential Commando

soldiers (who by then came from not only the British army but also

the Royal Marines and the Allied armies) underwent their tough

and purposeful training. Only those who succesfully completed all

the course were accepted and privileged to wear the famous Green

Beret. This distinctive head-dress was acknowledged as the hallmark

of the highest standards of military training, self-disipline, physical

endurance, initiative, bravery and courage, whilst under their simple

motto ‘United We Conquer’ a comradeship beyond literary

description was born, fostered and flourished.

 

For their valour in action the Commandos earned thirty-eight battle

honours and many awards, including eight Victoria Crosses, but

many made the supreme sacrifice, no fewer than 1,700 Commando

soldiers lost their lives and others were seriously wounded. It was a

record that prompted Winston Churchill to pay the following tribute

to the Commandos: “We may feel sure that nothing of which we

have any knowledge or record has ever been done by mortal men,

which surpasses their feats of arms. Truly we may say of them when

shall their glory fade”

 

This plaque was unveiled on the occasion of the Freedom of

Lochaber being conferred on the Commando Association on the

13th November 1993.

Commando Memorial

Commando Memorial

Commando Memorial

Commando Memorial

Commando Memorial

Commando Memorial

Commando Memorial

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