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Royal Military College of Australia

The Royal Military College of Australia (RMC-A) is a nationwide organisation which is responsible for the training of officers in the Australian Army. 
  • All new officers in the Army undertake their pre-commissioning training at a unit within RMC-A. 

This organisation encompasses both Part Time and Full Time training. The Headquarters of RMC-A is located at Duntroon, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory.


The Royal Military College of Duntroon (RMC-D) was first opened on 27 June 1911 by the Governor General, Lord Dudley.

The initial Commandant of the College was Brigadier General William Throsby Bridges, who later died on the shores of Gallipoli. 

Under his recommendations the College was modeled on aspects from the military Colleges of England, Canada and the United States. 

These were all combined to design a College that was specifically suited to Australian requirements.


Top of History of RMC Duntroon Site Selection

RMC-D was situated on the Campbell homestead in Duntroon Canberra. The family had named it after Duntrune Castle, their ancestral home on Loch Crenan in Argyllshire, Scotland. The Government first rented the Duntroon homestead for two years and finally acquired the freehold to the estate and 370 acres of land after the creation of the Federal Capital.

Duntroon was chosen after lengthy consideration. General Bridges had stipulated that it should be nowhere near a big city like Sydney or Melbourne as there would be a shortage of open ground for exercise purposes. 

As Canberra had been named as Australia's Federal Capital, it was decided that a location few kilometres from the site of the proposed city was the ideal location for the College.

Duntroon was chosen due to the nearby availability of unpopulated areas which would be suitable for training. These areas are still used today and are known as the Majura Range.

Top of History of RMC Duntroon Subsequent History

Since its establishment, graduates from RMC have served under the Australian Flag in every major conflict. Throughout the colleges history the length of the course at RMC has varied from 12 months to four years, however, the focus on producing capable and credible officers for the Australian Army has remained paramount.

If you walk through the grounds of RMC-D you will feel a rich sense of tradition and history.

Many of the buildings are heritage listed and the gardens are kept in an immaculate state.

In conjunction with this the College has formed many traditions over the past century, most of which still exist today.

Perhaps the most notable reminder of RMC's tradition and heritage are the seven wonders of RMC. These have been evolved over time by the cadets and are learned by all cadets upon arrival at the College.

RMC-D Traditions

Throughout the history of the Royal Military College, a number of traditions have emerged. Like the Seven Wonders of RMC, these have all been developed by the many classes of cadets that have passed through the College. Some of these legends and traditions are:

Casey. Legend has it that years ago at RMC, Staff Cadet Casey, a member of IV class, was skylarking prior to departure of the Corps on Christmas leave and was inadvertently locked in a broom closet. He was not missed from the leave draft and remained in the cupboard until the Corps returned to RMC the following year

Casey's skeleton was found but his ghost still haunts the corridors and cavities of RMC. As he will never graduate, to appease his spirit, a place is set for him at every Graduation Dinner and his skeleton is present at each Graduation Ball. The horse he rides is called 'Invader'.

  • College War Memorials. At the base of the flagpole, facing the parade ground, are five memorial tablets listing the names of graduates of RMC, Officer Cadet School Portsea and Officer Cadet Training Unit Scheyville, who have died on active service. A wreath is laid beside these tablets by the Corps each Anzac Day. As a mark of respect all cadets and staff salute the memorial tablets on passing by them.

  • Days to Go Board. In the Corps of Staff Cadets Mess there is a 'Days to Go' Board. A III Class cadet changes it at 6:30 p.m. daily. By tradition, this is done by the youngest member of III Class. This climaxes at the Graduation ceremony when the cadet changes the board to nil days to go, accompanied by appropriate drum rolls, trumpet fanfare and cheering of cadets.

  • Slouch Hat. When the slouch hat is worn at RMC, it has become traditional that the chinstrap buckle is on the right side of the face and the brim is down. General Bridges was wearing his slouch hat this way when he was fatally wounded at Gallipoli. (Bridges was actually wearing his hat back to front. Webmaster) The tradition was commenced at RMC in 1932. When the slouch hat is worn ceremonially, (e.g. on ANZAC Days) it is worn in accordance with the wider Army custom, i.e. brim up and chin strap on the left hand side.

  • Last Day on the Square. First Class celebrate the last day on the square (Parade Ground) just prior to their graduation. The parade is a frivolous one in which the graduates display an unusual perspective of the Corps to which they have been allotted.

  • 21st Birthday. When a member of the Corps has a twenty-first birthday, their classmates always help him or her to celebrate. By tradition the cadet concerned is thrown up in the Cadet Mess, (in front of the Days to Go Board) to the tune of 'Twenty-one Today'.

Barracks Pictures


  • The barracks blocks for Gallipoli and Long Tan Companies are shown above, the Company shown below is Kokoda.


  • Every session the 4 RMC companies compete for the Lee Shield, the winning company earning the right to be called The Sovereigns Company' and carry the Queens Colours on formal parades.

  • The summer graduation (Dec) of an RMC-D 1st class.
  • Winter graduation (shown above) takes place in winter Blues uniforms.

Graduation Parade 1966

For more details go to


The Grave of Major General Sir William Throsby Bridges at RMC Duntroon

Canberra, ACT. 1946-03-25. 

The grave of Major General (Maj-Gen) Sir William Throsby Bridges at Royal Military College, Duntroon.

Maj-Gen Bridges was mortally wounded at Gallipoli and died on the way to Malta. He was the first Commandant of RMC.

Canberra, ACT. 1946-03-25. The top of the tombstone showing the marble sword on Major General Sir William Throsby Bridges' grave, Royal Military College, Duntroon.

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