To mark the 75th anniversary of Operation Frankton and the birth of the Special Boat Service, the SBSA is launching it's biggest ever fund-raising event to raise funds for it's members who need your help, now.


Cockleshell Heroes 75


“The most courageous and imaginative of all the raids ever carried out by the men of Combined Operations”

Lord Louis Mountbatten


Cockleshell Heroes 75

This year marks the 75th anniversary of one of the most daring operations of World War II that Winston Churchill claimed shortened the war by six months: the raid on Nazi-occupied Bordeaux in Operation Frankton by the Cockleshell Heroes.

To mark this milestone, members of the public will in September join members of the Special Boat Service Association (SBSA) to re-trace the route by paddling the 70 miles from the Gironde estuary to the Bay of Bordeaux to raise funds for the SBSA.

The challenge epitomises the Commando Spirit and will give every participant a chance to experience in just a small way the challenges those 10 brave men faced 75 years ago. More importantly it will raise vital funds for the SBSA, which helps those who have followed the Cockleshell Heroes in demonstrating the same values of courage, selflessness and determination.

We invite you to take the opportunity to become a supporter of this event and contribute to the vital work done by the SBSA.

How do i support?

Join us by making the journey from Gironde to Bordeaux with members of the SBSA, become a corporate sponsor of the event itself, or back the fund-raising by an injured serviceman taking part in the paddle.

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How do i donate?

If you want to help one of the brave members of our Special Forces in their time of need, then go here to donate to Cockleshell Heroes 75 and aid a former member of the SBS today.

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A message from our patron

I am privileged to be the Patron of this event that will provide a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for all those involved, whilst at the same time raising funds which provide assistance to those who serve in the modern Special Boat Service and their families.

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Paddy Ashdown

The Rt Hon.Lord Ashdown GCMG KBE CH

The Special Boat Service Association


Supporting Soldiers

Supporting Veterans

Supporting Families

The Special Boat Service Association was formed in 1998 and exists to provide its members and their dependents peace of mind by providing charitable and welfare assistance and support whenever it’s needed.

In addition to providing charitable support, the SBSA fulfils the necessary functions of a Regimental Association in regard to ésprit de corps, comradeship and remembrance.

Thanks to advances in modern medicine, many injured SBSA members have survived what would in the past have been fatal injuries during combat with multiple limb loss and severe spinal and brain injuries. The SBSA works to ensure that the specialist support they and their families require is provided for them. Often this support sits outside mainstream NHS provision, and in the most serious cases warrants 24hr care by specialists. This means they require dedicated support to ensure as much independence as possible.

In less serious cases regular physiotherapy, rehabilitation and counselling will allow the members to achieve different goals in their lives as they transition from being injured servicemen into new careers and continue normal family life.

The darkest scenario is that a member doesn’t return. The SBSA is a close-knit community and the grieving family can rely on its support through their bereavement and adjustment into the next stages of life and onwards. Your financial backing can provide support in so many ways to allow these brave men and women not only to survive but also live their lives to the full.

Your Support In Numbers

Some examples of how money raised by the SBSA is used:

£300,000

Annual cost of providing life-long care for one member with the most severe injuries and major disability

£50,000

Purchase of holiday home for use by members and their families as respite

£25,000

Adaptation to member’s family home to include specialist clinical equipment

£10,000

Specialist wheelchair for use by member with loss of limbs

£5,000

Installation of central heating for an ageing veteran without hot water

£65.00

Counselling per session for a child who lost their parent