Thursday, 10 October 2013


Something a bit different to the normal fare of model soldiers..........

In April 1983 I was coming to the end of a Falklands tour and found myself in Port Stanley with a few days spare. So I decided to take a walk out to Moody Brook and to the battlefields beyond and have a look at the ground that the Task Force fought their way through. I took several photos and thought that viewers might like to see some images of the terrain before the Engineer clearance teams tidied everything up.

This was the time when the main road from Stanley to the countryside (or camp as locals called it) was little more than a mud track. I guess that today with the link to Mount Pleasant airfield its a lot easier to negotiate. Minefields were prevalent on both sides so I picked my way along to the western base of Mount Longdon. Immediately striking was the sheer difficulty of the rocky slope that 3 Para fought their way up. I have photos of the positions somewhere but haven't been able to find these so I'll keep looking.

Anyway first photo is of an Argentine recoilless rifle positioned to the eastern side of Longdon. Its arc of fire is facing south and you can see to the left the start of the slope to Tumbledown.

I'm not sure what the feature to the right is. Harriet, Two Sister's or Goat Ridge? You tell me! The gun is positioned to cover the Stanley Road which you can see as a vague line running left to right across the centre of the picture. I estimated the range as 800-1000 metres but it was certainly dominating the ground and the minefields either side. I cannot say how this weapon was used during the battle but there seemed little evidence that it had traversed right (facing west) where the main attack came from.

Moving further along Longdon turns into Wireless Ridge where I found this German made 20mm AA gun. I understand these were used in a ground role - certainly there were a lot of empty cases dotted around. The crew quarters can be seen just above the shield but I guess that grateful British troops were quick to use them once the clearance had been completed. Thats Longdon in the background and you can see how open the ground is to anybody firing at troops advancing off it.

I should say that Longdon was covered in piles of gathered British equipment like cairns dotted along the axis of advance. This was being cleared by the EOD teams. I left the kit alone not only out of prudence but it seemed morally dubious to help yourself - during the battle, yes, several months after, a definite no. I did however find an empty Argentine utility bag just flapping in the wind so I thought, why not?

Coming off Wireless Ridge you arrive at the old barracks at Moody Brook where some kit was being assembled.

There were 12 of these armoured cars and some were subsequently shipped back to the UK as war trophies - I think the HCR have one in their Windsor barracks. Those that weren't found their way as hard targets to the ranges (Observation Rock?) on west Falkland.

So there we are. Hope this may have been of interest. Please feel free to use the photos but credit would be nice!


1 comment:

  1. An interesting set of pictures. Thanks for sharing these.