Royal Army Dental Corps

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Royal Army Dental Corps
Royal Army Dental Corps cap badge.gif
Cap Badge of the Royal Army Dental Corps
Active1921 – present
CountryUnited Kingdom
BranchBritish Army
RoleDental support
Part ofArmy Medical Services
HQStaff College, Camberley
Motto(s)Ex Dentibus Ensis
(from the teeth a sword)
MarchGreen Facings
Colonel-in-ChiefThe Duchess of Gloucester
Tactical Recognition FlashRADC TRF.svg

The Royal Army Dental Corps (RADC) is a specialist corps in the British Army that provides oral hygiene services to British Army personnel and their families in war and in peace. The corps is a part of the British Army's Army Medical Services.


Formal picture of approx 50 males in Army Uniform, front row seated, with the Offiers, then 4 rows standing probably on benches or staging, about 15 per row, presumably of dentists who were passing out following completion of the course
Field Training Course, March 1944, The Army Dental Corps School of Instruction, Aldershot

While army regimental surgeons had been providing dental care services to soldiers since circa 1660, it was not until 1901 that a dental service branch was formally established under the Royal Army Medical Corps (RAMC),[1] but in 1908 this was dissolved and the Army returned to contracting civilian dentists.[2] It was re-established at the outbreak of the First World War in 1914.[2] In January 1921, dentists of the RAMC were split off into a separate Army Dental Corps (ADC). The corps was awarded the "royal" prefix to become the Royal Army Dental Corps in November 1946 in recognition of its service in the Second World War.[3]

Royal Army Dental Corps specialisations[edit]

Qualified dentists are all commissioned officers. Dental nurses are non-commissioned officers.[4]

Before the Second World War, ADC recruits were required to be at least 5 feet 2 inches (157 cm) tall and could enlist up to 30 years of age. They initially enlisted for seven years with the colours and a further five years with the reserve. They trained at the Royal Army Medical Corps Depot, Crookham Camp, Aldershot, before proceedings to specialist trade training. The two trades available at that time were Clerk Orderly (who assisted in the operating room and in clerical work) and Dental Mechanic (who worked in dental workshops).[5]


Order of precedence[edit]

Preceded by
Small Arms School Corps
Order of Precedence Succeeded by
Intelligence Corps


  1. ^ "Royal Army Dental Corps Historical Museum". Archived from the original on 11 November 2013. Retrieved 9 May 2014.
  2. ^ a b Gilles Dussault, "The Professionalisation of Dentistry in Britain: A Study of Occupational Strategies, 1900-1957", unpublished PhD thesis, Bedford College, London, 1981, p.132
  3. ^ "Royal Army Dental Corps". National Archives. Retrieved 9 May 2014.
  4. ^ "Royal Army Dental Corps: Soldier careers". Retrieved 9 May 2014.
  5. ^ War Office, His Majesty's Army, 1938

External links[edit]