Royal approval for newly-qualified Marines

21 February 2019, 08:05 | Updated: 21 February 2019, 08:14

For the first time The Duke of Sussex has visited the base of 42 Commando Royal Marines at Bickleigh in Devon.

Harry, who assumed the role of Captain General Royal Marines from the Duke of Edinburgh in December 2017, visited the base on Wednesday.

Since assuming the role, he has visited new recruits at the Commando Training Centre in Lympstone and recently met marines during a training exercise in Norway.

During that visit, on Valentine's Day, Harry was treated to framed pictures from his wedding day, as well as candles and soft music, in a tiny makeshift igloo.

On Wednesday, the duke learned about the specialist teams within 42 Commando and watched a joint personnel recovery (JPR) demonstration.

This included watching Royal Marines disembarking from a Merlin helicopter, with a rapid rope descent, and simulating the rescue of an F35 pilot from the new HMS Queen Elizabeth Aircraft Carrier.

Harry was then driven to nearby Dartmoor, where he watched a recruit troop finish its final Commando Test.

He saluted and clapped as the newly-qualified marines jogged past him on the final stretch of the 30-mile march.

The marines carried loads of 45lbs plus their rifles on the test, which must be completed within eight hours.

Harry then presented the troop with coveted green berets, which symbolically mark the end of commando training.