|Motto||Serve to lead|
|Established||1947Royal Military Academy, founded 1741, and Royal Military College, founded 1801)(merger of|
|Army Recruiting and Initial Training Command|
|Commandant||Major-General Zachary Stenning|
|March||Scipio (Slow) British Grenadiers (Quick)|
|Colors||Red, yellow and blue|
The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS or RMA Sandhurst), commonly known simply as Sandhurst, is one of several military academies of the United Kingdom and is the British Army's initial officer training centre. It is located in the town of Sandhurst, Berkshire, though its ceremonial entrance is in Camberley, Surrey, southwest of London. The academy's stated aim is to be "the national centre of excellence for leadership". All British Army officers, including late-entry officers who were previously Warrant Officers, as well as other men and women from overseas, are trained at the academy. Sandhurst is the British Army equivalent of the Britannia Royal Naval College and the Royal Air Force College Cranwell.
Despite its name, the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst's address is located in Camberley;the boundaries of the academy straddle the counties of Berkshire and Surrey. The county border is marked by a small stream known as the Wish Stream, after which the academy journal is named. The "Main Gate" is located on the east of the Academy on the London Road in Camberley. The "College Town Gate", which is used for regular access, is located on the west of the Academy on Yorktown Road in Sandhurst.
The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst was formed on the site of the former Royal Military College (founded in 1801 for the training of officers for arms other than the Royal Artillery and Royal Engineers) in 1947 when it amalgamated with the Royal Military Academy in Woolwich (founded in 1741 for the training of officers for the Royal Artillery and Royal Engineers).
Following the ending of National Service in the UK and the closing of the Mons Officer Cadet School in Aldershot in 1972, the RMAS became the sole establishment for male initial officer training in the British Army,taking over the responsibilities of Mons for training Short Service Officer Cadets, Territorial Army officers, and those joining the Regular Army as graduates. In 1984, the Women's Officer Training College Bagshot was also merged into Sandhurst. In 1992, a new Commissioning Course finally unified the training of male, female, and overseas cadets.
The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst Collection illustrates the history of the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, the Royal Military College, Sandhurst, and the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. The collection includes the Gentlemen Cadet registers, historic archives, uniforms, paintings, photographs, and other artefacts.
For the 1948 Summer Olympics in London, the newly created Academy hosted the running leg of the modern pentathlon competition.
In 2012, Sandhurst accepted a £15 million donation from the government of United Arab Emirates for the Zayed Building, an accommodation block, named after the UAE's founding ruler.In 2013, Sandhurst accepted a donation of £3 million from the Government of Bahrain for the refurbishment of Mons Hall, named in honour of the men who fell in the Battle of Mons. It was renamed as King Hamad Hall in honour of the King of Bahrain, which generated some controversy in the United Kingdom.
In 2015, Sandhurst appointed Colonel Lucy Giles as the first female college commander in its history.
In 2019, Sandhurst gained widespread media attention in Britain after cadet Olivia Perks took her own life after an alleged affair with a superior at Sandhurst and amid fears she was going to be dismissed.In May 2023, an inquest into her death found that the army missed chances to prevent Perks's suicide in failing to recognise signs of stress.
Potential officers, for regular, reserve, or professional qualified service, are identified by the Army Officer Selection Board (formerly the Regular Commissions Board, or RCB) situated in Westbury in Wiltshire.Assessment for regular or reserve direct entry service is undertaken at the same time, in the same groups, to the same standard. Nearly 10 per cent of British cadets are female and nearly 10 per cent of all cadets come from overseas. More than eighty per cent of entrants are university graduates, although a degree is not required for admission.
The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst instructors' cadre (group of trainers) is run once every year. The aim is to select 30 senior non-commissioned officers (SNCOs) from 60 over the course of 3–4 weeks. Instructors can come from any part of the British Army although most are historically from the Infantry. Typically before the 60 candidates arrive on the cadre, they would have had to have passed a 'Divisional pre-selection' course, meaning it would not be unusual for over double the 60 places to be contested. Sergeants and Colour Sergeants (Staff Sergeants from non-Infantry units) attend the Instructors Cadre. The Instructors Cadre is known to be demanding, both physically and mentally, compressing all the prominent physical tests and mental assessments that each officer cadet undertakes over the year course, into 3/4 weeks. No other instructor posting has a selection to pass in order to be a part of a training team.
There are three commissioning courses run at the academy. All are accredited by various academic and professional institutions, in particular the Chartered Management Institute. The Regular Commissioning Course, and increasingly the Short Course, are attended by international officer cadets from other nations' land forces. The three courses are:
1. The Regular Commissioning Course, which lasts 44 weeks, for Direct Entry officers into the Regular service.
2. The Short Commissioning Course, which is for Army Reserve officers and both regular and reserve service professionally qualified officers (e.g., doctors, dentists, nurses, lawyers, pharmacists, veterinary surgeons and chaplains).which lasts eight weeks. The short course consists of four training modules; the first two, Modules A and B, can be completed under the supervision of RMAS with University Officer Training Corps over a number of weekends, or at RMAS where each module lasts two weeks. The final two modules, modules C and D, of the Officers' training and assessment must be conducted at Sandhurst. This training can all be completed in an eight-week period at RMAS, or over a number of years. Upon completion, Officer Cadets become Second Lieutenants in the AR or Officer Training Corps (OTC), or Captains in PQO roles.
3. The Late Entry Officer Course (LEOC) for senior soldiers commissioning from the ranks.
The RMAS has an academic faculty staffed by civilian researchers with expertise in Communication and Applied Behavioural Science, Defence and International Affairs, and War Studies.
Unlike some other national military academies such as West Point in the United States, the École spéciale militaire de Saint-Cyr in France, the Royal Military College of Canada in Canada, the Pakistan Military Academy in Pakistan, the Nigerian Defence Academy in Nigeria or the Australian Defence Force Academy in Australia, Sandhurst is not a university. It only works with the Open University to award the Regular Commissioning Course 120 credit points towards a distance learning Honours Degree in International Studies which ultimately requires 360 points. Graduate entrants can gain a Postgraduate Certificate in Leadership and Conflict Studies from the Regular Commissioning Course and then embark on a pathway post-commissioning to complete a full master's degree from a university through further electives and a dissertation.Alternatively, non-graduate cadets have the opportunity to earn a BSc in Leadership and Strategic Studies through their military service, which is awarded by the University of Reading.
In overall command of the RMAS is the Academy Commandant, usually an officer of Major General rank. The senior warrant officer, the Academy Sergeant Major (AcSM), is one of the most senior warrant officers in the British Army. The regular commissioning course is split into three terms, each lasting fourteen weeks (referred to as the Junior, Intermediate and Senior Divisions, identified by differently coloured badges). Basic army training is covered in the first five weeks, which, by reputation, are the most gruelling (the families of the cadets are encouraged to support the cadets' morale by maintaining home contacts). The main RMAS Commissioning Courses start in January, May and September of each year. Each intake numbers approximately 200 cadets, each of whom is assigned to a platoon within one of two/three companies. Platoons are commanded by captains, with a colour sergeant who takes the main burden of day-to-day training, especially during the first term (unlike West Point, RMAS entrusts the majority of officer training to Senior Non-Commissioned Officers). There can be as many as seven companies within RMAS at any one time. There can be additional companies of Army Reserve or 'professionally qualified officers' in the Academy who take part in shorter (1–2 months) commissioning courses. Each company is commanded by a major and named after a famous battle or campaign in which the British Army fought.
Cadets on the regular commissioning course nominate two regiments or corps that they seek to join during Junior Term. This choice may be influenced by their instructors, by family connections, or by regimental history, among other factors. Each regiment is looking for different qualities in its officers, and each cadet is considered on a case-by-case basis. At the end of the Intermediate Term corps and regiments hold interviews, known as Regimental Selection Boards, to assist the corps and regiments in making offers to Officer Cadets. There can be competition among units for strong cadets and, conversely, among cadets for prestigious or specialised units. In the past, cadets might have been offered a so-called "confirmed cadetship", whereby they would effectively accept a commission into a given regiment prior to commencing the Commissioning Course. As of the January 2023 intake, Confirmed Cadetships are no longer offered to Officer Cadets, other than in very rare cases including technical expertise or a cadet being aged 30 or older when they start the commissioning course. Cadets on the short course will have already been sponsored by a reserve unit, a professionally qualified unit, or a University Officers' Training Corps, and will return to their unit post completion of the course.
A small number of regular army units are based at the RMAS to provide support for the colleges and their training:
The first Sovereign's Parade was held on 14 July 1948, in front of King George VI. Three Sovereign's Parades are held each year outside the Old College to mark the "passing-out" and the final parade at Sandhurst of the Senior Division. All cadets, except for those who have been back-termed through injury or other reasons, are inspected by the Sovereign (or their representative), participate in the Trooping the Colour and parade past the Sovereign (or his representative) and guests. Guests consist of invited dignitaries and friends and families of the graduating cadets.
One of the highlights of the Parade is Trooping the Colour. The Colour trooped is the Sovereign's Banner and the current banner is the third generation of itself, presented by Elizabeth II in March 1999;the first Sovereign's Banner, known as the "King George V's Banner", was presented by George V on 6 November 1918 and the second one was presented by Queen Elizabeth on 27 October 1978.
The honour of Trooping the Colour falls to the Sovereign's Platoon, the then-Champion Company/Platoon. The Sovereign's Platoon, which wears multi-coloured lanyards, using the colours of all three Divisions, is selected on merit and is the best platoon amongst the Division; these officer cadets are chosen from a competition in drill, orienteering, shooting and a cross-country race, ensuring they are of the best in endurance and teamwork.
In the past, the Sovereign's Platoon from the Senior Division formed the Colour Party with the Banner on the left flank of the parade; after the inspecting officer had completed inspection, the Colour Party would move to the centre place of the parade before the Saluting Base, awaiting the new Sovereign's Platoon to take possession of the Banner.The new Sovereign's Platoon would keep the Banner until handing it to the next Sovereign's Platoon in the next Sovereign's Parade; they had the privilege of leaving the parade before other divisions after the Senior Division officer cadets had marched into the Old College and the remainders of the parade would salute the banner while they were leaving the parade square.
Nowadays, the handover of the Sovereign's Banner from the senior Sovereign's Platoon to a new one dissipates. What replaces it is that the Sovereign's Platoon of Senior Division, instead of the new one, marches to receive the Banner. The Ensign, at the end of the parade, also marches into the Old College whilst carrying the Banner.
At the end of the Parade, the Colours and the Senior Division leave the parade ground via the Grand Steps of the Old College building. They are followed by the Academy Adjutant on horseback (the origins of this tradition are unclear).
Each Commissioning Course has awards granted to outstanding cadets. The following awards are presented during the Sovereign's Parade. Others are merely listed in the Parade programme. A system of Cadet Government also recognises merit by the appointment of Senior Under Officers, Junior Under Officers, Cadet Sergeants and Cadet Corporals.
The Sword of Honour is Awarded to the Officer Cadet considered by the Commandant to be the best of the intake. The Sword of Honour is donated and crafted by Pooley Sword.
This is awarded to the Officer Cadet who has achieved the best overall results in military, academic and practical studies. The King's Medal is presented on behalf of The Sovereign.
Awarded to the International Cadet considered by the Commandant to be the best of the intake. The International Sword is donated by the Ministry of Defence, the State of Kuwait, in memory of Sheikh Ali Al Sabah, the former Defence Minister, the State of Kuwait.
This is awarded to the International Cadet who has achieved the best overall results in military, academic and practical studies. The International Award is donated by the State of Qatar.
The MacRobert Sword is awarded to the Officer Cadet considered by the Commandant to be, overall, the best of the Short Commissioning Course. This sword is also donated by the MacRobert Trust and produced by Pooley Sword.
This is awarded to the most improved International Cadet. The King Hussein Award is donated by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in memory of the late King Hussein of Jordan.
This is awarded to the International Cadet who has produced an overall performance of particular merit. The Hodson's Horse Merit Award is donated by the Hodson's Horse British Officers' Memorial Trust.
This is awarded at the discretion of the Commandant for exceptional achievement.
In recognition of sustained and exemplary performance of merit and superb representation of their countries the Royal Military Academy.
In December 2016, the academy and its charitable trust created the Sandhurst Medal. Unlike most British medals, it is not awarded or authorised by the Sovereign and is instead awarded privately by the Sandhurst Trust. It may only be awarded to international cadets who have passed out from Sandhurst, not British graduates, and must be purchased for £215.Notable graduates such as Abdullah II of Jordan have mounted the medal on their military uniforms.
There are two chapels within the academy, the Roman Catholic Chapel (Christ the King) and the Royal Memorial Chapel, dedicated as Christ Church, which also contains the South Africa Chapel, which was originally the sanctuary of the second Chapel before it was enlarged. The original chapel was what is now known as the British Indian Army Memorial Room. The Royal Engineers designed the original Chapel, which features red brick, terracotta moulding, interlocking pediment copies and corbels in 1879. The chapel was dedicated by King George VI on 2 May 1937, after architect Captain Arthur C. Martin enlarged the building in a Byzantine style. The Memorial stained glass and Windows in the chapel honour the Brigade of Guards, Rifle Brigade, Royal Fusiliers, and the Hampshire Regiment, among other units. Some memorials, including one honouring alumni of the US Military Academy at West Point, are carved into the black marble flooring.On panels devoted to the particular campaigns in which they died, are the names of former cadets killed in action. At intervals above the panels are circular tablets to the memory of College Governors. The names of former cadets who have died on active service in the field, or elsewhere are listed in the spaces between the panels. Other tablets on the walls of the porch of the Church were moved there from the old Chapel. At the nave near the chancel steps, old Regimental colours hang from the pillars.
The college cemetery has (in 2017) 21 graves and headstones maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
An officer candidate school (OCS) is a military school which trains civilians and enlisted personnel in order for them to gain a commission as officers in the armed forces of a country. How OCS is run differs between countries and services. Typically, officer candidates have already attained post-secondary education, and sometimes a bachelor's degree, and undergo a short duration of training which focuses primarily on military skills and leadership. This is in contrast with a military academy which includes academic instruction leading to a bachelor's degree.
The Royal Military College (RMC), founded in 1801 and established in 1802 at Great Marlow and High Wycombe in Buckinghamshire, England, but moved in October 1812 to Sandhurst, Berkshire, was a British Army military academy for training infantry and cavalry officers of the British and Indian Armies.
The Royal Military Academy (RMA) at Woolwich, in south-east London, was a British Army military academy for the training of commissioned officers of the Royal Artillery and Royal Engineers. It later also trained officers of the Royal Corps of Signals and other technical corps. RMA Woolwich was commonly known as "The Shop" because its first building was a converted workshop of the Woolwich Arsenal.
The Royal Military College, Duntroon, also known simply as Duntroon, is the Australian Army's officer training establishment. It was founded at Duntroon, in Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, in 1911 and is at the foot of Mount Pleasant near Lake Burley Griffin, close to the Department of Defence headquarters at Russell Hill. It is comparable to the United Kingdom's Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and the United States Military Academy at West Point. Duntroon is adjacent to the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA), which is Australian Defence Force's tri-service military academy that provides military and tertiary academic education for junior officers of the Australian Army, Royal Australian Air Force and the Royal Australian Navy.
Colour sergeant is a rank of non-commissioned officer found in several armies and marine corps.
A cadet is an officer trainee or candidate. The term is frequently used to refer to those training to become an officer in the military or maritime sector, often a person who is a junior trainee. Its meaning may vary between countries which can include youths in voluntary youth organisations.
Under officer is an appointment held by the most senior cadets at some Commonwealth officer training establishments and in University Officers' Training Corps in the United Kingdom, and also a rank used in some Commonwealth cadet forces.
Officer Cadet is a rank held by military cadets during their training to become commissioned officers. In the United Kingdom, the rank is also used by members of University Royal Naval Units, University Officer Training Corps and University Air Squadron; however, these are not trainee officers with many not choosing a career in the armed forces.
Commandant is a title often given to the officer in charge of a military training establishment or academy. This usage is common in English-speaking nations. In some countries it may be a military or police rank. It is also often used to refer to the commander of a military prison or prison camp.
Pakistan Military Academy, also referred to by its acronym PMA, is an officers training centre located near Kakol village in the city and district of Abbottabad, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Established in October 1947, it is the sole service academy in Pakistan tasked with training cadets to serve as army officers. For educational training, the institution is accredited by NUST.
The Sandhurst Military Skills Competition is a military skills competition at West Point that first began in 1967 with the presentation of a British officer's sword to the United States Corps of Cadets by the British Exchange Officer. 2010's event, dubbed SANCOM10, was a two-day event conducted at West Point, New York. The 2009 competition featured a record 49 teams and nearly 500 competitors. Besides the 36 squads from each of the West Point companies, visiting service academy teams included the Naval, Air Force and Coast Guard Academies, Britain's Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS) teams "Red" and "Blue", Australia's Royal Military College Duntroon, Canada's Royal Military College (RMC), the National Military Academy of Afghanistan, and the Chilean Military School. That year saw eight ROTC squads: Texas A&M, BYU, East Carolina University, Iowa State University, Florida Tech, Georgetown, University of Hawaii, and Appalachian State.
The Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA) is a tri-service military Academy that provides military and academic education for junior officers of the Australian Defence Force in the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), Australian Army and Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). In 2016 the Academy began accepting civilian students in its undergraduate courses.
The Officer Cadet School (OCS) is a military training centre that trains commissioned officers for the four branches of the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF): the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, and the Digital and Intelligence Service.
Selection and training in the British Army is the process by which candidates for service are identified, inducted and brought onto the trained strength. The process is the responsibility of the Home Command.
The Pollock Medal is a prize awarded to the best cadet of the season, in commemoration of Sir George Pollock's exploits in Afghanistan, first at the East India Company's Military Seminary at Addiscombe, and later at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich.
The Sri Lanka Military Academy, commonly known simply as Diyatalawa, is the oldest military academy in Sri Lanka, and trains commissioned officers for the Sri Lanka Army. It is located in the garrison town of Diyatalawa in the central highlands of Sri Lanka. It has capacity to train more than 300 cadets.
Passing out is the official graduation ceremony following the completion of a course by military or other uniformed service personnel at their respective training school, college, or military academy, largely in Commonwealth nations. Soldiers, sailors, or airmen take part in a passing out military parade upon completion of a basic training course. The military parade during the 'passing out' ceremony may also consist of military bands, and other displays of synchronisation discipline such as a flypast, which may also include acrobatics.
A Corps of Drums, sometimes known as a Fife and Drum Corps, Fifes and Drums or Field Music is a traditional European military music formation. In contrast to a military band, a Corps of Drums' primary role is communication. Historically, music was used as signaling device throughout the day for keeping marching tempo and delivering commands. Today, the primary role of a Corps of Drums is ceremonial, performing in parades and military ceremonies. Besides drums, this formation may contain a variety of instruments including trumpets, bugles, and fifes.
Mons Officer Cadet School was a British military training establishment for officer cadets in Aldershot from 1942 to 1972, when it was closed and all officer training concentrated at Sandhurst. The training course at Mons was for National Service and Short Service Officer Cadets, Territorial Army officers, and those joining the Regular Army as graduates, except for infantry officers. It was relatively short, usually lasting only six months or even less, compared with two years at Sandhurst.
An officer is a person who holds a position of authority as a member of an armed force or uniformed service.
He is placed on the strength of a AR Unit but completes Modules 1–3 of the AR Commissioning Course (ARCC) with the UOTC and Module 4 at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.