Falklands 40: The headlines on June 8, 1982 as the war approached its final week

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THESE are the headlines in The News from June 8, 1982, as the Falklands War entered it’s final week.

Charles thanks boffins

THE Prince of Wales today personally thanked the backroom boys at the Admiralty Surface Weapons Establishment for the dedicated support they have given to the Falklands task force.

During a two-and-a-half hour tour of the top-secret Portsdown Hill establishment, the Prince met scientists, engineers, workshop and administration staff who have worked around the clock to help Royal Navy ships in their battle with the Argentine air force.

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The headlines from The News on June 8, 1982 as the Falklands War entered its final weekThe headlines from The News on June 8, 1982 as the Falklands War entered its final week
The headlines from The News on June 8, 1982 as the Falklands War entered its final week

Before his visit to the Portsdown Hill establishment, Prince Charles visited an ASWE out-station at Funtington, near Chichester.

He then drove his blue Aston Martin sports car to the ASWE headquarters on Portsdown Hill, where office staff cheered as he walked up the steps to be greeted by Kenneth Slater, director of ASWE.

With Mr Slater were DrDavid Kiely, director of surface weapons projects (naval), Captain Mike Jones, ASWE senior naval officer, and Captain John Cunningham, captain surface weapons acceptance.

The Prince's personal standard was run up as he mingled with staff before going into the main building to sign the visitors' book.

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Prince Charles was shown examples of ‘quick reaction’ responses produced at ASWE to counter the threats posed by Argentinian tactics and equipment - including deadly sea-skimming Exocet missile which crippled the destroyer HHMS Sheffield (writes Reg Betts, The News’s defence correspondent).

Working closely with high technology firms in the defence industry, ASWE boffins produced new electronic equipment for ships and Royal Marines units at remarkable speed.

Developments were designed, manufactured, and airlifted to the fleet in a matter of days.

British forces close in on Stanley

BRITISH forces today continued to close the net on the beleaguered Argentine garrison at Port Stanley.

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In the tense hours before any main assault on the Falklands capital advance patrols of British troops are ‘eyeball to eyeball’ with some of the defenders.

Official sources and correspondents' despatches indicate that, despite appalling weather, the British have consolidated key positions virtually on the enemy's doorstep.

British sea and land forces control the north of East Falkland, and large quantities of stores, guns, and ammunition have been moved there.

British artillery can now reach Stanley airfield, helping to seal off the 7,000-strong garrison from re-supply.

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President Reagan feels quite at home

President Reagan told both Houses of Parliament in an historic address today that Britain's young men were fighting for a cause in the Falklands, not ‘for mere real estate’.

The president - speaking from the Royal Galley - said: ‘On distant islands in the South Atlantic young men are fighting for Britain. And, yes, voices have been raised protesting their sacrifices for lumps of rock and earth so far away. But these young men are not fighting for mere real estate.

‘They fight for a cause, for the belief that armed aggression must not be allowed to succeed.’

In other news: Mary Rose praise for Prince

The Prince of Wales has proved a right Royal choice as President of the Mary Rose Trust.

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So says Alexander McKee, the Hayling Island man who rediscovered the once-forgotten Tudor warship in the Solent in 1968.

With £800.000 still needed to bring ashore, the ship's hull later this summer, Mr McKee has paid tribute to the ‘wonderful public response’ to the scheme.

But he says Prince Charles has played a key role in the raising of £1.2m in recent months.

‘The Mary Rose has had wonderful support, but the Prince has done far more than bring the ship to people's attention,’ Mr McKee said.

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