Almost 40 years after the Falklands War, members of the Past Finders joined the FIDF at the base of Mount Harriett to follow in the footsteps of 42 Commando’s.
Officer Commanding Justin McPhee introduced the group to the FIDF and set the scene. The battle took place at night which meant the group had to cover their faces with face paint so not to be seen by the enemy!
Once the group was cammed up and kitted with various child friendly weapons, grenades, and a radio, Sgt Karl Harris, discussed the advance forward. Sgt Harris explained that 42 Commando K and L Companies approached from the southeast of Harriett, and so the group advanced in the footsteps of their assault! Sgt Harris said the group would not have been able to advance without J Company, who created a diversion by firing from Wall Mountain to the west of Harriett.
During this assault K Company lost Cpl Lawrence Watts. The night sky would have been ablaze during the battle - a battle that left scars and debris visible to this day.
Once the group reached the summit of Mt Harriet, they learned that 42 Commando completed their objective and captured 300 Argentine prisoners.
Here the group gathered and C.O. McPhee showed the group the uniforms, bergens and weapons used 40 years ago and compared them to what is used today. The group agreed that modern equipment is far more superior.
C/Sgt David Peck set up a hexi stove, which was used in 1982, whilst other members of the FIDF used newer versions. Everyone got to sample a ration pack and the group were even served pudding before their main meal.
The group also achieved a badge for the Falkland Islands Walking Festival. Twenty-six of us took part in ‘Walking up Mt Harriett’. Well done Past Finders!
A massive thank you to members of the Falkland Islands Defence Force for taking the time to tell the group about this important battle.
Falkland Islands Museum & National Trust
Historic Dockyard Museum - Stanley - Falkland Islands