RLC manned Landing Craft

Am i correct in saying that 17 Regt handle all the landing craft down at Marchwood. I was wondering just how many assault craft they actually have, i heard that it was all of 10.

How big a lift capability do the army have without relying on the navy ? - i was just wondering if between the army and navy together they could pull off a mini D-Day if needed.
Depends what you define by a "mini D-Day". Each of the LPDs has 4 LCVP mk5 (Landing Craft Vehicle and Personnel) each capable of carrying a Troop or land rover/trailer, plus 4 LCU mk10 (Landing Craft Utility) capable of taking around 100 fully kitted bods.
HMS Ocean has 4 LCVPs. In reality this equates to approximately a 2 company simultaneous lift (possibly more) if those are vehicle heavy with assets like Viking. This ties in with the requirement for the other 2 "light" fighting companies in a Commando unit to be airlifted ashore simultaneously.
539 ASRM has a mix of LCVPs, 4 light hovercraft and an array of rigid raiding craft and inflatable raiders and is integral to 3 Cdo Bde, designed to be an organic asset for riverine operations, for example.
So in answer to our lift capacity if we're talking purely about "dismounts" a fair number of troops, but in reality vehicles take a lot of space on the LCUs and lift capacity is also massively dependant upon sea state, tides, time to the beach from the landing platform with different size loads, etc. Sorry if this wasnt the most help it could have been...!
Dont forget the airlift capability that comes with the Ocean. The CVS can also e re-roled to Landing platform Helcopter mode. Factor in the new LSLs and its possible, tho not particularily likley, that we could put on a fairly impressive amphibious landing in the right sort of benign conditions. As someone said the other day, almost as good a a USMC MEU! Whether its likely we'd see all these hulls available at the same time is of course a different matter.
I was just giving reference to the surface landing craft capability, though agreed clanky the CVS are used for short periods - although whether we have enough airlift assets to fill the spots available is another matter entirely! As mentioned before, the capability required is a simultaneous 2 company airlift from over the horizon alongside a 2 company surface assault using viking in landing craft. Out of interest what amphibious shipping does the RLC operate?


LPDs can operate helos as well as Ocean, though not as many or as large I understand. Just like Ocean cannot operate as many or as large landing craft as the LPDs (no welldeck, has to use davits).

Plus we have the new Bay class LSDAs coming in, I know these are RFA and not intended to be used a la amphibious assault so much, but the Dutch Marine Corps use "Rotterdam" (exactly the same as the Bays, we copied their ship) and they use it as an assault ship for the initial landings. And we still have the old LSLs, although being phased out, but they can run up the beach.

Then as a follow on from this (when we've secured a port) we bring in the Point class ro-ro ferries which are MoD owned I think, the rest of the RFA and STUFT (we just take over merchant shipping).

CVSs can re-role as Commando & helicopter carriers to airlift forces ashore, and I'd be surprised if CVF didn't retain that feature. I'm sure Argus the aviation training flattop did the same off Sierra Leone, and we might consider re-roling one of the old 'Vinces into a 2nd Ocean (is it the Ark which is most similar?). Given the capacity of some of the auxiliaries and that some of them have Chinook capable flightdecks if push comes to shove I'm sure we could fill their holds with booties. Might be able to deploy landing parties of sailors and RM boarding detachments (is it FPG RM that provide these?) from destroyers and frigates (we sold the Argies our old T42s they now use them in the APD or fast light raiding transport role). Aren't Fearless and Intrepid still in mothballs rusting somewhere?

Army Aviation like Lynx (battlefield version not seagoing version) and Apache (just finished its seagoing trials I gather), and RAF forces like Merlins and Chinook and Harrier would have to be embarked on shipping if we were doing anything large and opposed. Perhaps on RFA Argus as don't want to get in the way of Ocean and the LPDs already established set up of Sea Kings. And other Army forces are going to come into it in a big way too, to push through 3 Cdo once they've got the beachhead. Plus once we capture or build an airstrip you can have the RAF airlifting straight in too.

The submarine service could be very useful in landing small parties of SBS, UKSF etc, but nothing large scale is possible. However they're so covert its perfect for this kind of thing. Ever see the canoe on that Oberon class diesel boat in Birkenhead taking up the space where a torpedo should be in the forward compartment? Thats what they did in the Falklands. Rather you than me being fired through a torpedo tube though!!

I don't really know anything about 539, and 1 Asslt sqn, how do they deploy? Is there enough room on the davits/welldeck on the three assault ships to carry the extra hovercraft and RIBs or do they only come into play later in the rivers? A few of those American LCACs, the great big hovercraft would be useful as they don't set off sea mines or catch underwater obstacles and they're meant to carry lots of kit bloody fast!

And does Viking "swim" from the assault ships to the shoreline like the Americans do with their Amtraks/AAAVs, or do they get on a landing craft and they're only amphibious for rivers etc? As apparently booty now has to go through rebreather training in case the thing goes under, suggesting deep water and sea states...

Feliz navidad
There isnt really any spare davit space on the LPDs and LPH, so as happened in Telic 1 the extra craft from 539 are usually operated out of a FOB.
The LCAC (Heavy) the US use are a useful bit of kit, there are currently quite a few procurement programmes in the pipeline c/o ATTURM, the amphibious trials unit in North Devon. A faster LCU is being developed, along with a larger LCAC than the current light version 539 operate, and the ORC (Offshore Raiding Craft) is due to enter service soon, replacing the rigid raider mk3s.
Although when these enter service the overall numbe rof platforms in service wont increase massively the capability improvement will be significant due to shorter turnaround times - for example, the LCU 10 travels at the same speed as the LCU 9 but can put equipment on the beach significantly quicker as its RO-RO instead of just having a bow ramp, cutting down the fudge factor docking in the well deck of the LPD.
FPGRM provides boarding and protection teams but these are typically section strength (approx) for specific tasks. However, the new Type 45 destroyers are being built with booty in mind, if my information is correct.
Viking.....hmmmm, rebreather - basically a counterlung and the "breath hold technique"!!!!! As this is pretty much bollox i believe the STAS is being looked at along similar lines to aircraft as when i witnessed a viking sink the 2 man crew just got out, that was with no kit, no bowman fit in the wagon and no passengers waiting their turn to get out - basically the technique ofholding your breath wouldnt have worked. Viking is too slow to swim from the well deck of a ship to the beach, and its capability was designed to swim from a landing craft that couldnt get all the way in to the beach, or to cross rivers. Any questions feel free to PM me, this sites the only thing keeping me sane over the devastation that is crimbo.
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