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The Royal Belgian Sea Cadet Corps, officially the Royal Sea Cadet Corps (Dutch Koninklijk Marine Kadettenkorps, French Corps Royal des Cadets de Marine) is a voluntary youth organisation sponsored by the Belgian Navy.


The Belgian Maritime League formed a Corps of Cadets in 1922, initially to train young people for service in the Belgian navy or Belgian merchant navy.

In 1969 the Belgian Navy signed a convention, officially recognising and supporting the Sea Cadet Corps. The Sea Cadet Corps was awarded the use of the title "Royal" on its sixtieth anniversary in 1982.


There are 7 units across Belgium, with a total membership of a few hundred cadets and officers. Units meet every week or two weeks, usually on a Sunday, providing training and recreational opportunities for cadets. The curriculum includes seamanship, navigation, sailing, rowing and general boatwork, drill, first aid and other nautical subjects. Staff are all volunteers.

The 7 units are located at:-

  • Antwerpen (Antwerp)
  • Brussel/Bruxelles
  • Eupen
  • Hasselt
  • Ittre
  • Leuven/Louvain
  • Oostende (Ostend).

The Belgian Sea Cadet Corps is a uniformed organisation and receives logistical support from the Belgian Navy under a covenant with the Ministry of Defence. There are no further ties with the military, and in contrast to most other sea cadet organisations, the Belgian Sea Cadet Corps does not use weapons or includes marksmanship in its programme. Cadets and staff are not required to undertake military service and are not particularly expected nor encouraged to join the military.

The Belgian Sea Cadet Corps operates a fleet of some half a dozen small vessels, including a sailing yacht and several motor vessels. These are used for day training at sea or on inland navigation waters. A few times a year, longer cruises are organised either within Belgium or neighbouring countries.

Two annual training camps are organised; the main annual camp being held in Ostend each Summer. This event is referred to as 'Orka' and offers cadets a wide range of fun activities on a nautical theme during a period of seven to ten days.

A system of ranks is used, with badges being distinctly different from the military. Progression is based on merit and length of service. Cadets generally leave at the age of 18, with a small number becoming volunteer staff.

The Belgian Sea Cadet Corps is also a member of the International Sea Cadet Association and sometimes participates in international exchange programmes.


The Royal Belgian Sea Cadet Corps owns a fleet of vessels including:

  • fr (Libération (P902))[1]
  • MRB24
  • Riviersnelboot Sambra
  • Riviersnelboot Leie
  • Training Ship T25
  • Various small power boats and sailing boats



Membership of the Belgian Sea Cadet Corps is open to all young people aged 12 to 18. There is no specific recruitment time; cadets can join or leave at any time. Cadets pay a small annual membership fee.


English Dutch French Insignia
Recruit Scheepsgezel Mousse None.svg
Cadet Kadet Cadet None.svg
Cadet Second Class Kadet Tweede Klas Cadet de Deuxième Classe None.svg
Cadet First Class Kadet Eerste Klas Cadet de Première Classe 1KD BNC.svg
Quartermaster Kwartiermeester Quartier-Maître KMT BNC.jpg


All cadet units are staffed by unpaid officers and instructors, although some units may also have volunteer instructors. Recruitment is on a vacancy-only basis.

Non-commissioned Officers

English Dutch French Insignia
Second Master Tweede Meester Deuxième Maître 2MR BNC.jpg
Master Meester Maître None.svg
First Master Eerste Meester Premier Maître 1MR BNC.jpg
Chief First Master Eerste Meester Chef Premier Maître Chef 1OM BNC.svg
Senior Master Oppermeester Maître Principal None.svg
Chief Senior Master Oppermeester Chef Maître Principal Chef None.svg


English Dutch French Insignia
Fourth Lieutenant Vierde Luitenant Quatrième Lieutenant 4LT BNC.jpg
Third Lieutenant Derde Luitenant Troisième Lieutenant 3LT BNC.jpg
Second Lieutenant Tweede Luitenant Deuxième Lieutenant 2LT BNC.jpg
First Lieutenant Premier Luitenant Premier Lieutenant 1LT BNC.svg
Captain Kapitein Capitaine KPT BNC.jpg
Group Captain Groeps Kapitein Capitaine de Groupe CMD BNC.jpg
Commandant Commandant Commandant None.svg

Other naval cadet organisations


External links

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