Friday 8th April 2022
On 2nd April 1982, the Falklands conflict began, and now, 40 years later BFBS will spend the next 74 days commemorating the event.
Through a dedicated Falklands 40 hub page on its website Forces.net, BFBS will be sharing a memorial wall – highlighting lives lost – as well as videos, stories, and podcasts to mark 40 years since the conflict.
The memorial wall includes pictures, names, and ranks of the 255 British military who perished in the Falklands conflict. Over the next few months BFBS is inviting its audience to share any further information they have on these individuals to be added to the wall, which will remain on Forces.net for the rest of the year.
The hub page will also feature personal video accounts from those who fought in the conflict, alongside coverage of the events happening this year to mark the 40th anniversary.
Stories such as Air Gunner Sergeant Bill Belcher, RM 3 Commando Brigade Air Squadron, shot down 28th May 1982. Bill’s squadron flew Scout helicopters crewed by a pilot and air gunner, tasked with flying ammunition forward and returning with casualties. A week after landing, the helicopters supported 2 Para as it assaulted Goose Green. Bill, in the rear of the helicopter, was hit by an Argentinian Pucara, losing both legs, while his pilot Lieutenant Richard Nunn was killed at the controls.
And Welsh Guardsman, Neil Wilkinson who was on Sir Galahad and badly burned when it was bombed on the 8th of June. He said, “While I was on the QE2 going down, I sent my wedding ring back because I thought if I’m going to get hurt or anything, I don’t want anybody having my ring, so this ring was sent back in the mail to my wife and miraculously she got it… because I had a premonition that something was going to happen.”
Additionality there will be a six-part BFBS podcast focused solely on the Falklands conflict, which will feature interviews with Falklands veterans and Falkland Islanders who will share their memories of the conflict, as well as some insights on its legacy from servicemen and women who are based there now.
Other articles will give readers the opportunity to understand more about why the Falklands conflict took place, how it has shaped the military today and day-by-day, blow-by-blow accounts of the days that unfolded from 2nd April 1982.
And there will be unique stories, such as Linda Kitson’s, who was assigned the special duty of capturing drawings of the Falklands frontline as the official war artist by the Imperial War Museum. She explains how she had to shroud her deployment in secrecy ahead of travelling south with the Task Force.
People can submit pictures and tributes to individuals for the memorial wall at: [email protected].