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Watch as Royal Marines board Plymouth-bound Brittany Ferry packed with holidaymakers

A Royal Marine clambers up the back of the Brittany Ferries' Armorique. Credit: Royal Navy

This is the shocking moment a squad of marines stormed a Plymouth-bound Brittany Ferries ship packed with holidaymakers.

Royal Marines from the 539 Assault Squadron and 42 Commando boarded the Armorique as she returned from Roscoff, approximately ten miles off the Devon coast.

Passengers watched on in shock from the upper decks as the commandos clambered up the rear of the ship at high-speed.

The marines boarded the ferry off the coast of Plymouth. Credit: Royal Navy

The exercise was designed to test the marines’ boarding skills, as well as their use of the Pacific 24 sea boats and climbing equipment.

The Royal Marines are one of only a few forces in the UK trained to conduct this sort of Operation, so it is vital we do this training regularly, under the most arduous conditions possible.

42 Commando’s J Company is unique in that it is trained to conduct ‘level three’ boarding operations, which is to say that your access to a target vessel is opposed; through either manoeuvre, obstacles, force, or all of the above.

During this sort of boarding, the point of greatest vulnerability can often be the embarkation. In fact, achieving access to a fast-moving vessel is in some cases more dangerous than the enemy protecting it.

Success in such an endeavour requires rigorous training, courage and importantly, an expert coxswain who can stand up to the conditions.

– Captain Jack Denniss of 539 Assault Squadron

Watch video of the boarding here: