Forty years ago this week I was called on by my country to put into practice the many years of training, rehearsals and exercises I had taken part in over the previous 18 years of service with the Royal Navy. I was given 72 hours notice together with a team of 12 other aircraft maintainers’, who only vaguely new each other, to travel 8000 miles to the South Atlantic. We normally only operated one helicopter from the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) Ship Regent but went up to a war compliment of two Wessex 5 helicopters for Operation Corporate. We weren’t alone: 1,300 men went from RNAS Yeovilton accompanied by 25,000 men from the other Armed Forces and civilian Merchant Navy.
Looking back on it we visited places in the South Atlantic and the Antarctic that tourists pay a fortune to visit these days: the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and South Thule in the South Sandwich Group of Islands. I have attached a few photos of the main places of interest.