ABF The Soldiers’ Charity has released a special-edition podcast to mark the 40th anniversary of the Falklands Conflict, featuring testimonies from veterans who fought in the various campaign battles, and the broadcaster Robert Fox, who witnessed the conflict first-hand.
Host Harry Bucknall pays tribute to the British armed forces who gave their all to liberate the Falkland Islands after Argentine forces invaded on 2 April 1982.
Captain John Phillips, then a Warrant Officer Class 2 and Royal Engineers explosive ordnance disposal expert, and a colleague, Staff Sgt Jim Prescott, were called to deal with an unexploded bomb in HMS Antelope’s refrigerator. Jim was killed in the blast; and Captain Phillips was severely injured, losing an arm.
As John recalls on the podcast:
“We set up our rocket wrench and it works like a Catherine wheel, unscrewing it. So, we had a third attempt. And this time, when I fired it for the third time, took the cables out, as I did before, prepared to go forward to inspect, there was a huge explosion.
“Jim and I had milliseconds. We looked at each other in the eye because Jim was standing right next to me. And it wasn’t expected, of course. And then there was this almighty rush, and the next thing I know, I was flying through the air.”
In the years since the Falklands conflict, ABF The Soldiers’ Charity has supported many veterans still living with their physical and mental injuries. In the past two years, we have spent almost £240,000 supporting veterans who served in this conflict, and their immediate families, both via grants to individuals and grants to 18 other charities including the Army Widows’ Association, Combat Stress, The Poppy Factory, Walking With The Wounded, Royal British Legion Industries, Defence Medical Welfare Service, Falklands Veterans Foundation, SSAFA, and SAMA (82).
During the forthcoming 40th Anniversary period ABF The Soldiers’ Charity will be organising and supporting various events to commemorate the conflict. More details will be available on our Falklands 40 events page.