About Us

BARBADOS DEFENCE FORCE

ABOUT THE BARBADOS DEFENCE FORCE

 

The Barbados Defence Act (1979) created a body of Her Majesty’s forces to be known as the Barbados Defence Force consisting of a regular Force; a reserve Force to be known as the Barbados Defence Force Reserve; and a Cadet Force.

The Force is structured as follows:

  • Headquarters Barbados Defence Force
  • The Barbados Regiment, the land forces element of the Force made up of regular and reserve subunits
  • The Barbados Coast Guard, the maritime element of the Force made up of regular and reserve subunits.
  • The Youth Development Wing, which comprises the Barbados Cadet Corps and the Barbados Defence Force Sports Programme

The Barbados Defence Force is responsible for the defence of Barbados and such other duties as the Defence Board determines. The Chief of Staff of the Barbados Defence Force is, subject to the directions of the Governor-General, responsible for the operational use of the Force, but the Prime Minister may, where no directions have been given by the Governor-General, give to the Chief of Staff directions with respect to the operational use of the Barbados Defence Force in Barbados for the purposes of maintaining and securing public order and public safety, as the Prime Minister thinks fit; and the Chief of Staff shall comply with those directions.

The BDF is totally committed to assisting with national development, particularly through the training of the nation’s youth. To this end, the command and training of the units of the Barbados Cadet Corps are the responsibility of the officers and non-commissioned officers of the Barbados Defence Force who are posted or attached therefor to the Cadet Corps.

Although there is a large degree of specialisation within the Force, all ranks are trained in a common set of core disciplines which enables them to function in the many roles assigned to the Force.

The BDF is frequently engaged in humanitarian assistance and disaster response operations in addition to providing assistance to the Civil Power and Civil Ministries, along with performing its ceremonial duties. As a member of the Regional Security System (RSS), the BDF has rendered assistance during the  Grenada intervention in 1983, in response to the Jama’at al-Muslimeen coup in Trinidad in 1990 and between 1994 and 1996 in Haiti. The Force also assisted Jamaica in 1988, Montserrat 1989 and Grenada in 2004 during the aftermath of hurricanes Gilbert, Hugo and Ivan respectively.  More recently the Force conducted disaster relief operations to Dominica in 2015 and 2017 in the aftermath of the passage of Tropical Storm Erica and Hurricane Maria respectively.

Command Element

Chief of Staff

Colonel Glyne S Grannum

Colonel Glyne Grannum joined the Barbados Defence Force (BDF) on 18 October 1985 and underwent career development training at the Canadian Forces Officer Candidate School, Chilliwack and the Combat Training Centre, Gagetown New Brunswick, Canada. He subsequently attended the Infantry Training Centre and the Signal Wing in Warminster, UK (PCBC and RSO Courses respectively), the International Institute of Humanitarian Law in San Remo, Italy; the Lester Pearson Canadian Peacekeeping Centre, the Canadian Land Forces Command and Staff College, Kingston, the Canadian Forces Command and Staff College, Toronto, the National Defence University of the People’s Liberation Army People’s Republic of China and the Centre for Hemispheric Defence Studies, National Defence University, Washington. He also attended…

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Colonel Glyne Sinatra Grannum, Chief of Staff Barbados Defence Force, MSM, MBA, MDS, pcsc

Colonel Glyne Grannum joined the Barbados Defence Force (BDF) on 18 October 1985 and underwent career development training at the Canadian Forces Officer Candidate School, Chilliwack and the Combat Training Centre, Gagetown New Brunswick, Canada. He subsequently attended the Infantry Training Centre and the Signal Wing in Warminster, UK (PCBC and RSO Courses respectively), the International Institute of Humanitarian Law in San Remo, Italy; the Lester Pearson Canadian Peacekeeping Centre, the Canadian Land Forces Command and Staff College, Kingston, the Canadian Forces Command and Staff College, Toronto, the National Defence University of the People’s Liberation Army People’s Republic of China and the Centre for Hemispheric Defence Studies, National Defence University, Washington. He also attended a Defence Resources Management programme at National Defence Headquarters, Ottawa, Canada. In addition to being a qualified infantry officer, Col Grannum is a qualified Regimental Signals Officer and a former Operations Officer and Finance Officer of the BDF.He has trained junior non-commissioned and senior non-commissioned officers and has been involved in the professional development of junior commissioned officers (lieutenants and captains from Caribbean states) having been a member of the Directing Staff of the Caribbean Junior Command and Staff Course in Newcastle, Jamaica.His career has had many highlights, including his role as the lead architect for the design of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007 security plan for tournament events in Barbados, an effort which helped shape security plans in the other Cricket World Cup host nations and the CARICOM Regional Security Plan. He commanded the Independence Day parades in 2012 and 2013 and chaired the Working Group (2013 – 2015) which led to the design and successful roll out of the BDF’s Group Health and Major Medical Insurance Plan.Immediately prior to becoming the Chief of Staff (the senior officer in command of the military in Barbados) on 1 February 2017, he was the Director of Operations and Plans in the Headquarters of the Regional Security System (2015 – 2017).He holds a Master of Business Administration degree (with Merit) from the University of Surrey and a Master of Defence Studies degree from the Royal Military College of Canada. He is the recipient of the Chief of Staff’s Commendation (1994), two Defence Board Commendations (1996 and 2007), the Meritorious Service Medal (1998), the Services Medal of Honour (with 2 clasps), the General Service Medal (2011), the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal (2013) and the Governor General of Barbados’ Medal of Honour (2017).

Deputy Chief of Staff

Commander Aquinas Clarke

Commander Aquinas Joseph Clarke joined the regular Force on 1 Jul 93. He received his early education at the St Patrick’s Roman Catholic Primary School and the Louis Lynch Secondary School (formerly the Roebuck Secondary School). After leaving secondary school he attended the Barbados Community College and the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill, Campus.Commander Clarke enlisted in the Barbados Defence Force on 1 Sep 91 as a member of the Barbados Defence Reserve and transferred to the regular Force on 1 Jul 93, on completion of his academic studies at the Barbados Community College.He successfully completed basic officers’ training at the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM), UK in 1994. In 2001 he attended junior staff training at the Caribbean Junior Command and Staff College in Jamaica where he was awarded top student…

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Commander Aquinas Joseph Clarke MSM, BSc, MSc, MMAS, pcsc

Commander Aquinas Joseph Clarke joined the regular Force on 1 Jul 93. He received his early education at the St Patrick’s Roman Catholic Primary School and the Louis Lynch Secondary School (formerly the Roebuck Secondary School). After leaving secondary school he attended the Barbados Community College and the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill, Campus.Commander Clarke enlisted in the Barbados Defence Force on 1 Sep 91 as a member of the Barbados Defence Reserve and transferred to the regular Force on 1 Jul 93, on completion of his academic studies at the Barbados Community College.He successfully completed basic officers’ training at the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM), UK in 1994. In 2001 he attended junior staff training at the Caribbean Junior Command and Staff College in Jamaica where he was awarded top student. He is also a graduate of the US Army Command and General Staff College, the Nanjing Army Command College, the Naval Postgraduate School, the Centre for Hemispheric Defence Studies and the Inter American Defence College.

During his career Cdr Clarke held the following appointments:

Troop Commander – 1995 to 1998
Assistant Staff Officer Finance and Procurement 1999 to 2001
2IC A Coy 2001 to 2002
Officer Commanding A Coy (now Special Operations Coy) 2002 to 2004
Staff Officer Operations and Training (G3 BDF) 2004 to 2007
Executive Officer (Deputy Commander) Barbados Coast Guard 2008 to 2011
Commanding Officer Barbados Coast Guard 2013 to 2016Commander Clarke holds a BSc in Political Science with Law from the University of the West Indies, a MSc in Risk, Crisis and Disaster Management from the University of Leicester, United Kingdom and a Master of Military Arts and Science (MMAS) degree from the US Army Command and General Staff College.His interests include world politics, security risk management, disaster resilience, preparedness and response, international law and sports. He loves cricket, football and mixed martial arts. He is an untiring supporter of the West Indies Cricket and Manchester United Football teams. In his spare time he reads non-fictional material, he loves to shoot (he is a qualified firearms instructor and range officer with both military and civilian certification), he loves running, he hikes and he enjoys being involved in meaningful debates and discussions. He is married and has 3 children.

Force Sergeant Major

Master Chief Petty Officer 1
Austin Howell

 

Master Chief Petty Officer Class 1 Austin R Howell was born on 10 October 1970 and joined the reserve element of the Barbados Defence Force (BDF) in September 1987. He recruited and was transferred to the full-time element of the BDF in September 1989 and was posted to the then Commando Squadron at Paragon Base. He was promoted to the rank of lance corporal in December 1992, to the rank of corporal in August 1995; to the rank of sergeant in December 1999; to the rank of Chief Petty Officer in August 2007, to the rank of Master Chief Petty Officer Class 2 in August 2013 and Master Chief Petty Officer Class 1 in April 2017…

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Master Chief Petty Officer Class 1 Austin R Howell

Master Chief Petty Officer Class 1 Austin R Howell was born on 10 October 1970 and joined the reserve element of the Barbados Defence Force (BDF) in September 1987. He recruited and was transferred to the full-time element of the BDF in September 1989 and was posted to the then Commando Squadron at Paragon Base. He was promoted to the rank of lance corporal in December 1992, to the rank of corporal in August 1995; to the rank of sergeant in December 1999; to the rank of Chief Petty Officer in August 2007, to the rank of Master Chief Petty Officer Class 2 in August 2013 and Master Chief Petty Officer Class 1 in April 2017.

During his career, he completed his Junior NCO’s cadre in 1992, his SNCO’s cadre in 1997 and his Warrant Officer’s Course in Belize in 2013, where he was awarded best student. He also completed his Advanced Drill course in October 2016. Additionally, during his career, he attended several military courses both local and overseas,  namely, the Barbados commando course, the Martinique commando course, Advanced Jungle course in Dominica,  Internal Security Instructors course, Puerto Rico in 1994, Light wheeled Vehicle Mechanic course in the USA in 1997, Instructors development course in Puerto Rico in 2000, Range Authorization course in 2004, Divemaster in 2006,  and he also successfully completed an Underwater Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) course in the United Kingdom in 2007.

His military operational deployments include deployments to The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago in July 1990 during the attempted coup, Haiti in 1994 during the attempted coup and Grenada in 2004 during relief efforts after hurricane IVAN. He is the recipient of the Queen’s Jubilee Medal, The General Service Medal, the UN service medal and the Barbados Service Medal of honour.