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amunastra

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About amunastra

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    coventry

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  1. Hi Mandy,I didn't know J Collinson but there is a John Madderson on facebook that might have known him,he joined the Northumberland Fusiliers in 1964 so there is a chance he knows someone who knows him.The floods washed all the make shift homes off the sides of the hills.
  2. I spoke to Wiley just before he was killed ,we were mates and he was a nice guy. Our last words to each other were see you back in blighty.I was in Zulu company and I had just gone to get a coke cola from the machine. Wiley was in the back of the Landover, he was standing up through the hole in the wire mesh SLR in his hand, outside his company offices waiting for Major Moncur.Wiley also told me they had instructions from the CO that there not going to enter Crater.RIP Bernard Wiley.
  3. Thanks Leigh i shall check out all the sights.The cemetary i saw couldn't have been Silent Valley as the gravestones were not in any order,there were a few British graves and they were scatered about but i can't remember were i was at the time.I do remember Command Hill which no one ever seems to quote on.1 RNF had to guard it.The C.I.C.was Admiral Sir Michael Le Fan U (not sure how to spell his name). Then there was a General and an Air Vice Marshall.I remember the Admirals name, as i was approached by him when on duty at the front post.He asked me if i would like to be his body guard,as i w
  4. Z Company had to spend 3 weeks living in a tent encampment on the Yemen border.We flew up there in Beverly transport planes.We sat on wooden benches and the side door was open and i sat opposite it.When the plane banked going between hills i suppose it's the only time i ever felt air sick ,looking out of the door it was a strange feeling.The planes had black scorpions painted on them.When we got to the camp there was an Arab army tent encampment next door.The town was a few hundred yards away but clearly visable from our camp.We were allowed to go to the town on one condition and that was we
  5. I have read some reports that state that what started the unrest was that the Arabs thought the British had helped the Israelies in the 6 day war.I along with a small group of men entered Crater in the dead of night.We were given names and addresses and our orders were to extract the israelies that were living there and lead them to safety,which we did.I don't know how many small groups there were but i suspect that there would have been a small group for every area to do the same thing.The Arabs when they woke up in the morning would have realised this but i wouldn't have thought it would be
  6. Colonel Blinkensop was relieved of his command we were told on that day because he wanted to set up mortars and blast the hell out of Crater.They had set up such a firing position we would have been caught in crossfire,he called a Battalion meeting in the morning we assembled on the parade ground and he told us of the very grave situation.He sat us all down and thanked us for all we had done.When he heard of the massacre (and as i said before Z Coy were in the gym ready to come home)we were told he had been relieved and the Battalion temporarily stood down.I shall also say that Wyllie told me
  7. I wished my late parents had kept more of my letters as they are more accurate than my memory.I have a letter dated 8/6/67 and it reads i had another grenade thrown at me the other day it landed a couple of yards away nobody was injured and we caught the thrower.(If my memory serves me right the thrower was shot by my Sgt who had a wound in his right leg as i heard my Sgt shout waqif waqif followed by the distinctive sound of a sterling sub machine gun and as the thrower was brought past me i remember thinking that sterling cant be much good if thats all it does). thats two i have had in a c
  8. Thanks Leigh thats fantastic,it was very scarey i think that at 18 then in 67 you were to young to realise the danger,we were suppose to have 4 mags with 20 rounds in each but one day when i drew my ammo the mags only had about 20 rounds in between them,often wondered whether those last 6 lads to go in on the 20th June had a full compliment as they were never seen alive again and 6 x 80 should have been enough to take on a large crowd.
  9. Thanks very interesting and brought back many mermories thank you,one they didn't cover and it nearly cost the lives of my whole platoon was.To use up old ammo we had to go to the sea just outside the barracks and set up red flags about 200 yards apart.(i have sent Leigh a picture of the lads errecting a pole on the beach). Some of the ammo was dated 1942 which suprised me.Anyway my section went first and we fired hundreds of rounds into the sea.No targets just just fired widley,some of the lads said lets get the fishing boat as the locals would take out the nets and leave the boat just on sho
  10. I have just found a letter i sent to my late parents dated 23/1/67 just put a couple of extracts to add to this,because of a lot of trouble coming from a certain alley way (our lads had been injured in the morning)the Royal engineers were building a wall to block off the alley way next to where i was standing So i suppose the terrorist was aiming at them and not me but he didn't have a very good aim.So it would have been around about 20th i think wondered if there was an incident report around that time regarding the Royal engineers building a wall and 1RNF covering them about an unexploded g
  11. I can confirm that some members of our Battalion were very rough on the Arabs and it was filmed so it goes down in history but there were a lot of guys especially the new arrivals who couldn't believe what we were seeing.Kicking cars and people ,rifle butting them and the worst of all in my opinion was when we came under fire someone would always shout fire at the Mosque.Which i'm glad to say i never did.They knew the Mosques would be full of people,we came under heavey fire one day and it's shown in End of the Empire a documentry.There was a lot of firing at the Mosques that day and i was tol
  12. I spent some time on that observation post in Shiek Othman there was a football pitch behind it and i thought it was strange as i had never seen a football pitch of sand instead of grass.The Mosque in question was a very short distance from us.We had a search light just like the ones in used during w11 we would sleep on the roof as it was flat and every now and then we would switch on the search light and scan the area to check for movement but all we seemed to see was dogs roaming around then the Imam would start calling prayers very early in the morning 4 or 5 o'clock .I have never seen sta
  13. Main pass and Marine drive i spent many hours on road blocks searching cars and lorries but never found anything myself but i remember Taffy getting into position and he saw a packet of cigarettes picked it up and bang but it was only the detinator that went off his face was pot marked for weeks but he was very lucky.Because the streets were so narrow and the roofs flat it ws easy for the terrorist to just lay on the roof and lob a grenade over the top onto the patrol.Which hapened quite often many soldiers will say that their district was the hottest for terrorist activity but when you mentio
  14. When we knew our mates were trapped and dying we were so angry, although my company Zulu were in the gym with our suits on ready to go home.We drew thousands of rounds of ammo because Colonel Blinkinsop wanted to blast the hell out of everyone in Crater to go and rescue our lads.I had two bandoleers of 7.62 around me ready for the GPMG.But we heard he and our battalion was stood down because of the hatred we had,i can only presume the higher ranks thought they would have had a blood bath on thier hands.Geordies stick together and we were all itching to get in there and there would be a lot of
  15. I remember Duffy winning his DCM .To keep an eye on Crater we had to travel 5,000feet to the top of Samsham a mountain overlooking Crater. Two of us would lay either side in shallow baskets.Rifle in first then lay on top and you held on to the sides of the basket that were attached to a Sioux helicopter.You weren't strapped in so it was very scarey.I did it a few times and it never got any easier.Duffy was in the helicopter and it was shot down and he rescued the pilot made sure the other guy was okay then he got the radio and then the helicopter exploded.I asked him afterwards what went throu
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