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History of the SBS

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History of the SBS

Post  Shock-Wave on Mon Sep 14, 2009 1:07 pm

The Special Boat Service or SBS is the special forces unit of the British Naval Service. Their motto is "By Strength and Guile". It forms part of the United Kingdom Special Forces (UKSF) group.
The SBS is an independent unit of the Royal Marines based at Royal Marines Poole, in Poole, Dorset, co-located with 1 Assault Group Royal Marines and 148 Commando Forward Observation Battery, Royal Artillery.

The Special Boat Section was formed from the Folbot Troop of HQ Layforce in the Middle East and was sometimes known as '1 SBS'. In 1942, the personnel were subsumed within 1 Special Air Service Regiment and formed part of 'D' Squadron, subsequently retitled the "Special Boat Squadron"; as such they adopted the cap badge and tan beret of the SAS. A second Special Boat Section was raised in 1943 in the United Kingdom for service with the Special Service Brigade (subsequently re-titled Commando Brigade) as '2 SBS'. As a British Commando formation, personnel of 2 SBS wore the Commando Green beret. The Special Boat Squadron of 1 SAS became an independently operating squadron and was subsequently expanded to regimental status as the Special Boat Service continuing to wear their parent regiment cap badge and beret.
In 1946, the SBS, whether of Commando or SAS parentage, were disbanded. The functional title SBS was adopted by the Royal Marines. It became part of the School of Combined Operations under the command of "Blondie" Hasler. In 1951 another two squadrons were formed from British troops in West Germany. Two volunteer squadrons were later added. Their first missions were in Palestine (ordnance removal) and in Haifa (limpet mine removal from ships). In 1977, the SBS changed its name to Special Boat Squadron and in 1987 the SBS became part of the British Special Forces group alongside the Special Air Service and 14 Intelligence Company. In March 2005, the commanding officer of the SBS, Lieutenant-Colonel Richard Van Der Horst, was killed in a training accident in Norway.
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