Falklands 40: Headlines from The News, Portsmouth on June 9, 1982

Here’s what was making the headlines as the Falklands conflict continued to rage.

By Mollie Delahay
Thursday, 9th June 2022, 4:55 am

Jets damage British ships

At least 11 Argentine fighter bombers are now believed to have been destroyed in two separate air attacks which damaged four British ships off the Falklands yesterday.

The 2,400-ton Devonport-based frigate HMS Plymouth and the 3,270-ton logistic landing ships Sir Tristram and Sir Galahad were damaged in the first attack on task force ships.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

RFA Sir Galahad ablaze after the Argentine air raid at Bluff Cove near Fitzroy settlement on East Falkland Picture: Martin Cleaver/PA Wire

The Argentine aircraft were destroyed in the raid, one was possibly shot down, and four others were so seriously damaged that it is thought unlikely they reached their home base.

Ninety minutes later, twilight fell on the Falklands, Sea Harrier jets shot down four Mirage jets in the second raid - but the remnants of the Argentinian war planes pressed home their attack and damaged a landing craft.

Other enemy aircraft may have been damaged in the dusk attack.

First reports said that five casualties from HMS Plymouth were removed to another ship and underwent treatment.

It is understood that Plymouth suffered shrapnel damage, and her 4.5-inch forward gun turret was also hit as a result of bombing by the enemy aircraft.

The latest Argentinian attacks are believed to herald a new offensive designed to disrupt the imminent British attack on the Falklands capital, Port Stanley.

The Sir Tristram and Sir Galahad are based at the Army's port at Marchwood, on Southampton Water.

Operated by a crew of 68 officers and men of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, they're armed with 40mm guns and carry 50 tanks and vehicles and 150 tons of stores and ammunition.

US tanker warned of attack

The American-owned super-tanker attacked by Argentinian warplanes in the South Atlantic yesterday received a warning message minutes before it was hit, the Ministry of Defence said today.

It was sent in English on an international distress frequency. It told the 220,000-tonne Hercules to go towards an Argentinian port.

The message, preceded by the call sign of an Argentinian radio station, warned that the ship would be attacked "in 15 minutes' time" if it did not obey.

The Liberian-registered tanker was attacked twice yesterday 480 miles north-east of the Falklands.

The huge vessel suffered some damage to the hull and was listing six degrees last night.

50p call captures vital post

British troops - in a secret three-day operation - have captured the strategically vital settlements of Fitzroy and Bluff Cove, 15 miles south-west of Port Stanley.

They were helped by a 50p phone call.

A British patrol discovered that telephone lines from Swan Inlet to Fitzroy were still working, so Brigadier Tony Wilson, commanding officer of 5 Infantry Brigade, stepped into the nearest phone box, inserted a 50p piece, and called villager Reg Binney.

‘Are the Argies still at Fitzroy?’ he asked.

‘No,’ came Reg Binney's reply. ‘Why don't you come over and join us?’

Knights close in on the Baron

Fearsome dragons, valiant knights, and a dastardly baron are some of the ingredients of the first major drama production by Portsmouth Grammar School’s Lower School.

The Thwarting of Baron Bolligrew opened last night in the New Hall, Penny Street, Old Portsmouth, and there is a second performance today.

Written especially for children by Robert Bolt, it tells the story of how a group of knights restore law and order to islands ruled by the wicked Baron Bolligrew.

Said assistant director (Miss Doreen Waterworth): ‘It is a case of good triumphing over evil in the end.’