Plans are underway for a day of commemoration and reflection to be hosted in Carlisle, as 2022 sees the 40th anniversary of the end of the Falklands conflict.
The Falklands War began on 2nd April 1982 when Argentine Armed Forces, then under the leadership of President Galtieri, invaded the Falkland Islands, a UK Overseas Territory. In response, the UK Government sent a task force to recover the Islands and to restore UK sovereignty.
Whilst the conflict itself lasted only 74 days, ending on 14th June 2022, it was costly in terms of lives lost with 255 UK Armed Forces personnel killed, 649 Argentine Armed Forces casualties, and the deaths of 3 Falkland Islanders, with a further 2,432 personnel injured. Today, the Falkland Islands remain an internally self-governing UK Overseas Territory.
Saturday 14th May 2022 is the date set aside, and the day will include a parade through the city and a service at St. Cuthbert’s Church with a reception at Tithe Barn.
Carlisle is home to more than 20 Falkland’s Veterans with many more throughout Cumbria and a great deal of interest in the event has been shown already, both locally and nationally. The event is being organised by a group of people which includes Carlisle resident and author Rachel Simons who grew up in Stanley during the Falkland’s conflict, Carlisle Falkland’s Veteran Howard Foster, and Canon Jim Hyslop of St. Cuthbert’s Church whose son Richard Hyslop was appointed the Falkland Island’s Government Representative to the UK in 2019. This group is being supported by local Carlisle MP John Stevenson.
Speaking about the planned event John said, “I am delighted that plans are in place for Carlisle to host a significant event to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the end of the Falklands conflict. It is important that we remember the bravery of the 33,000 British Troops who travelled to the Falklands to re-establish peace and freedom and the ultimate sacrifice of those that fell. I would like to encourage residents in Carlisle and the surrounding area to join us on the day and support this event.”
Rachel Simons added, “ As a Falkland Islander who experienced the conflict first hand, I am forever grateful for the day the guns finally fell silent and our precious home was liberated.”
Howard Foster, a Forward Observation Officer with the 3rd Battalion the Parachute Regiment during the conflict said “It is important that 40 years on we remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice.”
Canon Hyslop added, “The service is to commemorate and celebrate the liberation of the Falklands as well as remembering with thanks those who lost their lives to gain this peace. The preacher at the service will be Revd David Cooper who was Chaplain to II Para during the conflict and was commended for his bravery.”