Achnacarry Commando Training Centre – Scotland

The Commando Basic Training Centre at Achnacarry
Located on the banks of the River Arkaig the castle is flanked by daunting and desolate mountain terrain. Ben Nevis is just 18 miles away and waiting as a final challenge at the end of most courses. In the immediate vicinity of the main building hutted accommodation was erected, amongst where a large multi purpose hut was dominant; it was originally named the Commando Depot before being renamed the Commando Basic Training Centre. Around the drill square hard asphalt replaced the green lawn of the Castle and austere Nissen huts with their corrugated iron sides and roofs served as accommodation housing between 25 and 40 men. The first courses arrived for training in March 1942 and by the time it closed in 1946 more than 25,000 men had passed through the gates of Achnacarry to participate in what was the forerunner of all Special Forces training throughout the world. Not all the men were Commandos; other units sent contingents to Achnacarry for training and much of what was taught in those early days is still the basis for Commando training today.