The Royal Marines can most concisely be described as troops who served on board ship. They were not part of the army but a separate body that was organised into three main divisions, namely: Chatham, Plymouth and Portsmouth. As with all the armed services, the records of officers and other ranks were kept quite separately and it is essential to know which rank a man was.
Service records of officers appointed between 1793 and 1925 are available without restriction.
After that date the records are still with the Ministry of Defence.
The records of service of other ranks are arranged by division. For most divisions the records begin around 1755. Records of service are subject to a 75-year closure period.
For records more recent than those indicated, enquiries from the individual concerned or, if deceased, from the next-of-kin should be directed to the Ministry of Defence.