To commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the Falklands War and to celebrate Armed Forces Week, the Mayor of Hereford Mark Dykes was invited by Rear Admiral Wilcox to host a lunch for forces veterans at Hereford Town Hall.
The 40th Anniversary of Falklands was particularly special to the City of Hereford, as during the conflict the City adopted the HMS Antelope, a frigate of the Royal Navy that was sunk by Argentine aircraft. 255 men died during the Falklands War, with 28 of those having their roots in Herefordshire.
On Sunday 19th June, Hereford was honoured to receive both the Captain and the crew of HMS Antelope, along with many other armed forces veterans, including members of the SAS. Of those in attendance was also General Sir Michael Rose KCB, CBE, DSO, QGM, and many other high-ranking personnel.
The Mayor of Hereford Mark Dykes, also an armed forces veteran, was delighted to have been presented with a shield from the SAS 22 Regiment, which will be displayed in Hereford Town Hall.
The HMS Antelope, adopted by the City of Hereford, was sunk by Argentine ordinance explosives. Attacked by aircraft, the Antelope was struck by bombs which failed to explode, and though attempts were made to disarm these devices, the bomb ultimately exploded and the order was given to abandon the vessel. Two servicemen perished due to the attack, while the remaining 41 survived.
It was an honour to commemorate the brave efforts of those who have served our Country and celebrate those who still serve. We also remember the fallen, who fell in the line of duty and paid the ultimate sacrifice. Lest we forget.
The Royal British Legion have created a message board for those wishing to pay a tribute and honour the lives and sacrifices made at https://www.britishlegion.org.uk/get-involved/ways-to-give/poppy-press/your-falklands-messages
If you need support or someone to talk to locally, please contact Herefordshire Veteran Support Centre (https://herefordshire-vsc.org) on 01432 260656 or the Herefordshire Mental Health 24 hour helpline on 0808 196 9127.