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Welsh Guards 40th Anniversary Ride Of Respect

Falklands Memorial Pontypridd

The Council is supporting The Welsh Guards 40th Anniversary Ride of Respect as it travels through Rhondda Cynon Taf on Wednesday, June 22.

Held over four days (June 21-24) the motorcycle Ride of Respect is being held to remember and honour The Welsh Guards and attached Arms who sadly lost their lives 40 years ago during the Falklands Conflict in 1982.

It is an Act of Remembrance to the Fallen; a Show of Respect to the families who live on without their loved ones; Raising Awareness at the locations of Falklands Memorials; and a Show of Support to Veterans and their families.

The Welsh Guards 40th Anniversary Ride of Respect will be visiting graves and memorials around the country dedicated to Fallen comrades, those who sadly lost their lives during the Falklands Conflict (April 2 - June 14, 1982). 

Councillor Maureen Webber, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council Deputy Leader and Armed Forces Champion, said: “It is a huge honour to welcome these riders to Rhondda Cynon Taf, in particular Ynysangharad War Memorial Park in Pontypridd, on the 40th anniversary of the Falklands Conflict, which claimed so many lives.

“We owe our Armed Forces servicemen and women, Past and Present, and their families, so much and will never forget the sacrifices they made. Forty years on and the heartache goes on for so many, especially those who lost loved ones during the battle.

“The Ride of Respect honours them all as we welcome the riders, give our thanks and remember those who never returned home to their families.”

The riders will cover a total distance of over 1,000 miles, starting at Combermere Barracks, Windsor, on the morning of Tuesday, June 21, and finishing at the Welsh Guards Memorial in Wrexham on the afternoon of Friday, June 24.

They are expected to arrive at Ynysangharad War Memorial Park, Pontypridd, at around noon on Wednesday, June 22, where they will lay a wreath at the Falklands Memorial in memory of Sergeant C Elley, Guardsman I Dale, Guardsman M Gibby, Guardsman B Jasper, Guardsman A Keeble, and Guardsman G Poole.

On the same day, the riders will also lay a wreath at the Llanharry Memorial in memory of Guardsman A Keeble, Ynysybwl Memorial in memory of Guardsman B Jasper, and at the Cynon Valley Memorial Garden in Aberdare in memory of Lance Corporal P Sweet - all local Welsh Guards who tragically lost their lives during the Falklands Conflict.

A total of 56 men died aboard the ships Sir Galahad and Sir Tristam in Bluff Cove, Falkland Islands, on Tuesday, June 8, 1982, 32 of whom were Welsh Guards. Many more were injured. The destruction of the Sir Galahad by Skyhawk jets came just six days before the end of the Falklands War.

The 1982 Falklands Conflict lasted for 10 weeks, resulting in the deaths of more than 900 people. The Argentine invasion of the British-held Falkland Islands led to the deaths of 255 British military personnel, three islanders and 649 Argentine soldiers during the 74-day Conflict. British forces regained the Falkland Islands on June 14, 1982. 

Posted on 22/06/2022