- Can women join the Royal Navy?
- Why are women not allowed to serve in the Royal Marines?
- Can I be LGBT and serve in the Royal Navy or Royal Marines?
- What is the Royal Navy's ethos regarding Equality and Diversity?
- What is your policy on bullying and harassment?
- Are there any restrictions on age that will limit my employment in the Naval Service?
- I have a disability. Can I join the Naval Service?
- What support is provided for Naval Service personnel with families?
- What arrangements are in place for Naval Service personnel with dependant children who are deployed on operations?
- What are the Naval Service core values?
- How long will a recruit have to sign up for?
- What if they want to try the Royal Navy out before committing?
- What about joining the Royal Marines?
- How much leave do recruits get?
- How long is the training?
- Can they buy themselves out?
- How long are they away for?
- If there is an emergency, how can I get in touch with my son or daughter?
- What is the policy on drug taking?
Women can join the Royal Navy, Royal Navy Reserves, QARNNS and Royal Marines Band Service and serve in all branches; however female personnel are currently excluded from serving as Royal Marines Commandos and, for medical reasons, from serving in submarines. Both of these Armed Forces (AF) policies are regularly reviewed.
There are a number of roles in the AF which are closed to women on grounds of medical or combat effectiveness/team cohesion. Those roles are; Royal Marines Commandos; the Submarine Service; the Household Cavalry and Royal Armoured Corps; the Infantry and Royal Air Force Regiment. However, we do have women who serve in the Royal Marines Band Service, and there are females who have passed the All Arms Commando Course. This allows them to serve in support of 3 Commando Brigade Royal Marines. This legal exemption from discrimination law is regularly reviewed.
Yes. The Naval Service is interested in people with potential to do their job, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender.
Our ethos is inclusive; it welcomes and appreciates differences and we are committed to ensuring that every individual has equality of opportunity for employment, training and advancement based solely on merit, and that they can be themselves at work to achieve their full potential in an environment that is trusting and open.
Bullying and harassment in the Naval Service is not tolerated; our people should be able to work in an environment free from intimidation, humiliation, harassment or abuse. Any allegations of discrimination, harassment, bullying or victimization will be addressed with impartiality using clearly laid down MoD processes.
Under Schedule 9 of the Equality Act 2010 the AF have an age exemption on the grounds of combat effectiveness. The delivery of fighting power is primarily the preserve of youth. AF personnel have to be able to respond to a wide range of operational circumstances in the most challenging environments. In order to maintain combat effectiveness and the ability to respond immediately in an emergency, all posts in the AF carry with them an underlying commitment for deployment. For this reason we tend to recruit most of our personnel from the younger end of the age spectrum. Thereafter, the best of these people are progressed to Command positions at non-commissioned and officer level. Unlike other employers, the AF cannot bring personnel in to fill senior positions as they will not have had the required experience. There is a range of compulsory retirement ages for AF personnel based on rank.
Under Schedule 9 of the Equality Act 2010 the AF have a disability exemption on the grounds of combat effectiveness. However, subject to a medical board, where AF personnel become disabled during the course of their service and a suitable post can be found for them, they may be retained – this decision is made on a case by case basis and retention is not guaranteed. The Government do not expect the rationale for the exemption from the Equality Act to change; hence there are no plans to remove this exemption.
The Naval Service provides a wide range of support to families of serving personnel. These include; flexible/alternative working patterns (operational commitment permitting), statutory maternity and paternity provision, support from the Naval Families Federation, Naval Personal and Family Service and RM Welfare groups providing comprehensive social work, community and advice service to Naval Service personnel and their families. Many Naval and Royal Marine establishments provide crèche facilities for working parents.
What arrangements are in place for Naval Service personnel with dependant children who are deployed on operations?
The Naval Service has an interest in helping sailors and marines balance the needs of their employment with their family life. However as sailors and marines, serving parents or carers must be available for deployment at any time and thus have a responsibility for ensuring that they have arrangements in place to care for their children or dependant adults should they need to be away. Advice and guidance for serving parents is available from Career Managers and Naval Service support networks. AF policies allow serving couples with dependant children to accommodate only one serving parent being deployed at any one time.
- Respect for Others
The length of service will depend on the role your son or daughter is doing and which part of the Royal Navy or Royal Marines they are working in, but they always have the option to request to leave. They will then need to work their notice period of 12 months. They are normally required to serve for around two and a half years after training.
If your son or daughter has serious concerns that the Royal Navy or Royal
Marines isn’t the right career for them, in certain circumstances we’ll allow
them time off to give them the space to review what they want to do.
That’s fine. The Royal Navy runs a four-day Acquaint course in Scotland every week that gives prospective candidates a taste of what life will be like during initial training and on a ship or submarine. It also gives your son or daughter a chance to ask questions and find out more about the different options available to them.
It is a chance for the Royal Marines to assess whether your son is ready, physically and mentally, to enter training, and for him to find out about the Royal Marines and life at CTC. He will learn about Commando training and meet some recruits and talk to them. If he is not successful in passing the PRMC, the selection staff can give him further support.
Find out more about the PRMC Course
Depending on when they do their training, they will get two weeks at Easter and Christmas and three weeks in the summer. All weekends that are non-working will also be given as time off.
Back to top
How long is the training?
It varies, depending on the branch being entered. For a Royal Naval Rating, initial training takes eight weeks, and professional training can take between five weeks and four years. Training for Officers varies according to specialisation.
Initial training for Royal Marines Commandos is 32 weeks long, and for Royal Marines Officers is 54 weeks.
Back to top
Can they buy themselves out?
Generally, no, though if they leave before serving their minimum service time for any sponsorship money, they may be asked to pay some or all of it back.
Most deployments are about six months in length, though this can vary.
Ships generally only deploy once every two or three years. though. Between deployments they will have some periods alongside (in port) and some time doing trials and training, when they are often at sea for just 1-2 weeks at a time.
Ships at sea and units ashore, both in the UK and abroad, have satellite phones, which can be used in an emergency. Everyone who is deployed abroad is also given 20 minutes’ worth of free satellite calls a week. Email is the most popular way of staying in touch and all ships have email access. Mobile phones are also allowed on ships – though there may be some restrictions about when they can be used. You can also write letters or send a telegram to a ship.
Back to top
Drugs in the Royal Navy and Royal Marines are not tolerated. Those found guilty of drug usage are usually discharged from the Service.