Standing NRF Mine Countermeasures Group 1
Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group 1 (SNMCMG1) is a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) standing mine countermeasures Immediate Reaction Forces. Prior to 1 January 2005 it was known as the NATO Mine Countermeasure Force (North) (MCMFN).

SNMCMG1 is a permanently established naval squadron that normally consists of seven mine countermeasures vessels, including a dedicated command ship.


Today, SNMCMG1 is under the operational command of the Allied Command Operations (ACO) has operational command of the force. Command is delegated through Joint Force Commander Brunssum (JFC Brunssum) to Commander Allied Maritime Component Command Northwood
Commander-in-Chief Fleet
Commander-in-Chief Fleet is the admiral responsible for the operation, resourcing and training of the ships, submarines and aircraft, and personnel, of the British Royal Navy...

. Day-to-day planning of the force is conducted from NATO Headquarters Allied Maritime Component Command Headquarters Northwood and long-term planning is carried out in collaboration with the operational staff at Joint Force Command Brunssum and the Combined Joint Planning Staff (CJPS).

The area of operations for the group includes the waters of Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

 from the North of Norway
Norway , officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic unitary constitutional monarchy whose territory comprises the western portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula, Jan Mayen, and the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard and Bouvet Island. Norway has a total area of and a population of about 4.9 million...

to the Mediterranean and from the Irish Sea
Irish Sea
The Irish Sea separates the islands of Ireland and Great Britain. It is connected to the Celtic Sea in the south by St George's Channel, and to the Atlantic Ocean in the north by the North Channel. Anglesey is the largest island within the Irish Sea, followed by the Isle of Man...

 to the Eastern Baltic Sea
Baltic Sea
The Baltic Sea is a brackish mediterranean sea located in Northern Europe, from 53°N to 66°N latitude and from 20°E to 26°E longitude. It is bounded by the Scandinavian Peninsula, the mainland of Europe, and the Danish islands. It drains into the Kattegat by way of the Øresund, the Great Belt and...

Since 1998 SNMCMG1 has also been operating in coastal waters of the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

 and Iceland
Iceland , described as the Republic of Iceland, is a Nordic and European island country in the North Atlantic Ocean, on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Iceland also refers to the main island of the country, which contains almost all the population and almost all the land area. The country has a population...


Seven NATO navies regularly contribute to the force. Belgium
Belgium , officially the Kingdom of Belgium, is a federal state in Western Europe. It is a founding member of the European Union and hosts the EU's headquarters, and those of several other major international organisations such as NATO.Belgium is also a member of, or affiliated to, many...

, Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

, Norway
Norway , officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic unitary constitutional monarchy whose territory comprises the western portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula, Jan Mayen, and the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard and Bouvet Island. Norway has a total area of and a population of about 4.9 million...

, and United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 provide ships continuously. Denmark
Denmark is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. The countries of Denmark and Greenland, as well as the Faroe Islands, constitute the Kingdom of Denmark . It is the southernmost of the Nordic countries, southwest of Sweden and south of Norway, and bordered to the south by Germany. Denmark...

 and Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

 provide ships as national priorities permit. New NATO members Estonia
Estonia , officially the Republic of Estonia , is a state in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. It is bordered to the north by the Gulf of Finland, to the west by the Baltic Sea, to the south by Latvia , and to the east by Lake Peipsi and the Russian Federation . Across the Baltic Sea lies...

, Latvia
Latvia , officially the Republic of Latvia , is a country in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. It is bordered to the north by Estonia , to the south by Lithuania , to the east by the Russian Federation , to the southeast by Belarus and shares maritime borders to the west with Sweden...

, and Lithuania
Lithuania , officially the Republic of Lithuania is a country in Northern Europe, the biggest of the three Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, whereby to the west lie Sweden and Denmark...

 joined the group in beginning in 2005.


The origins of the Channel
English Channel
The English Channel , often referred to simply as the Channel, is an arm of the Atlantic Ocean that separates southern England from northern France, and joins the North Sea to the Atlantic. It is about long and varies in width from at its widest to in the Strait of Dover...

 command predate NATO. Belgium, France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, Luxembourg
Luxembourg , officially the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg , is a landlocked country in western Europe, bordered by Belgium, France, and Germany. It has two principal regions: the Oesling in the North as part of the Ardennes massif, and the Gutland in the south...

the Netherlands and the United Kingdom formed the
Western Union of Defense Organization in September 1946.

NATO established the Allied Command Channel by
February 1952.

The mine countermeasure force was first formed in
May 1973.


Date of information Name Country Dates of Command Flag ship Source
May 2003 Commander Adrian Cassar United Kingdom May 2002 - 28 May 2003 HMS Dumbarton Castle
HMS Dumbarton Castle (P265)
HMS Dumbarton Castle was an offshore patrol vessel of the British Royal Navy. Her main role was the protection of the offshore assets of the United Kingdom, including oil and gas installations and fisheries out to the 200 mile limit....,
18 May 2004 Commander sg Michael Flagstad Denmark 28 May 2003 - 28 May 2004 HDMS Lindormen
HDMS Lossen,,
18 May 2004 Commander sg Per Kartvedt Norway 28 May 2004 - 12 May 2005 HNOMS Vidar
HNoMS Vidar (N52)
HNoMS Vidar was a Royal Norwegian Navy minelayer and command vessel. Vidar was built by Mjellem & Karlsen in Bergen in 1977. Her sistership is HNoMS Vale, which was given to Latvia in 2003. Vidar is named after Odin's son Vidar from Norse mythology. The vessel was the command ship for MCMFORNORTH...
4 January 2006 Commander Nico Vasseur Netherlands 12 May 2005 EML Admiral Pitka
EML Admiral Pitka (A230)
EML Admiral Pitka is a Beskytteren-class ocean patrol vessel of the Estonian Navy and belongs into the Estonian Navy Mineships Division. The commanding officer of the vessel is Senior Lieutenant Peep Laanisto...

Information needed
? Commander Serge Ots Belgian Navy ? - 10 January 2008
? Commander Chris Davies Royal Navy
Royal Navy
The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

10 January 2008 - HMS Hurworth
HMS Hurworth (M39)
HMS Hurworth is a Hunt-class mine countermeasure vessel of the British Royal Navy.On 2 March 2009, she was the centrepiece of the festivities to mark the 800th anniversary of the granting of a freedom charter by King John to Great Yarmouth.-External links:*...

 (United Kingdom)
? Commander s.g. H. Holck Rasmussen Denmark 2009 - 2010 HDMS Thetis
HDMS Thetis (F357)
HDMS Thetis is a Thetis-class ocean patrol vessel belonging to the Royal Danish Navy.In mid-1990s the ship served as a platform for seismic operations in the waters near Greenland. In 2002 she took over the role from her sister ship Hvidbjørnen as a platform for Commander Danish Task Group. The...

See also

  • Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group 2
  • Standing NATO Maritime Group 1
  • Standing NATO Maritime Group 2
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