The Vice Chief of Defence Staff, himself a Royal Marine, openened the new Centre for Urban Tactics and Climbing (CUTAC) at the Royal Marines Barracks in Wandsworth on Thursday 2nd March.
Opened by General Sir Gordon Messenger KCB DSO OBE ADC, the Centre for Urban Tactics and Climbing was built to train Royal Marines in urban and close combat warfare. The facility has been opened up to the Metropolitan Police and the London Fire Brigade and they now train together on a regular basis. The officially released photos show Met. Police Counter Terrorist Specialist Firearms Officers (CT-SFO) assigned to Operation HERCULES and specialist London Fire Brigade personnel working alongside Royal Marines instructors.According to UK MoD sources: “The £200,000 Centre for Urban Tactics And Climbing will prepare Commandos for climbing up, abseiling down and storming buildings in towns and cities.” It has also been revealed that the facility was designed, built and installed at the Royal Marines Reserves’ London HQ in under ten months.
The MoD states that although CUTAC is specifically aimed at honing the urban combat skills of Commando Reservists, plus any other military units which wish to use it, the facility has been designed from the outset with all three of the capital’s emergency services in mind to practise rescues in multi-storey buildings.
“This facility is a fantastic addition to our London base – without it we would travel for several hours to get the value of similar training,” said Lt Col Ed Moorehouse RM, Commanding Officer of RMR City of London.
“It’ll prove to be an essential tool not just for Royal Marines but for all our military colleagues in and around London. Moreover, and just as importantly, the Blue Light services – giving us all a chance to train together, cross-pollinate and swap skills together as well as develop new tactics by sharing this facility.”