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The battle for Goose Green

An old oppo of mine who was wounded at Goose Green but later went on to RMAS and back to Para Regt with a commission loathed Farrar Hockley Jr. Riding on father's reputation came up a few times but most particularly some quite specific criticisms of his personal conduct during the battle.

ETA: having done a quick google my oppo was indeed in A Coy.
I don't think your oppo was alone. I have heard that he wasn't liked, especially amongst his fellow officers. Didn't he eventually become CO 3 Para like his old man and retire as a Colonel?
 

Oyibo

LE
An old oppo of mine who was wounded at Goose Green but later went on to RMAS and back to Para Regt with a commission loathed Farrar Hockley Jr. Riding on father's reputation came up a few times but most particularly some quite specific criticisms of his personal conduct during the battle.

ETA: having done a quick google my oppo was indeed in A Coy.

I've heard similar views
 

slick

LE
Last one I read on the Goose Green battle was by ex 2 para John Geddes, called Spearhead Assault. I`ll have to dig it out and have another read.
 
Last one I read on the Goose Green battle was by ex 2 para John Geddes, called Spearhead Assault. I`ll have to dig it out and have another read.
John Geddes was in Patrol Company. This is an excellent doco on the Battle of Goose Green with John Geddes and Phil Neame. Also there are appearances by Major Dair Farrar-Hockley and Major John Crossland.

 
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QRK2

LE
Although he was commissioned originally in the Royal Anglians.

Phil Neame was, of course, originally commissioned into the RAF Regiment.

I find it interesting that Keeble, Neame and Crossland all went on to command TA Regts/Bns. I've always thought that Para Regt posted rather better officers to it's TA Bns than other regiments tended to. qv Jacko did a stint as a Trg Maj at some point.
 
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Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
Phil Neame was, of course, originally commissioned into the RAF Regiment.

I find it interesting that Keeble, Neame and Crossland all went on to command TA Regts/Bns. I've always thought that Para Regt posted rather better officers to it's TA Bns than other regiments tended to. qv Jacko did a stint as a Trg Maj at some point.
There's a very valid argument to be made for sending some of your best soldiers to training establishments. Best-in-breed begets better soldier, and all that.

Unfortunately, for too many years in some places there was a habit of sending the problems, the downgrades and those whose wives were, er, bikes issues to get them out of the way.

For instance, the Major in charge of my company during Basic hadn't been back to his battalion for (at that point) 11 years. PERSEC and OPSEC aside, if he's even still alive, I'll not name regiment or location as I'm too much of a gent.

He was, though, described to me by the sergeant who took me through Basic (who was a bloody good soldier and from the same regiment) as "a fücking embarrassment" and I'm inclined to agree.

The mindset that thought sending such an individual to a junior soldier training establishment was a good thing to do is, I'd suggest, questionable.

I'm told things have changed. I hope so.

[/THREAD DRIFT]
 

QRK2

LE
There's a very valid argument to be made for sending some of your best soldiers to training establishments. Best-in-breed begets better soldier, and all that.

Unfortunately, for too many years in some places there was a habit of sending the problems, the downgrades and those whose wives were, er, bikes issues to get them out of the way.

I recall being told by a Gunner major that he would never command as his sub-unit command tour had been at a training establishment which, if true, is ridiculous.
 
I recall being told by a Gunner major that he would never command as his sub-unit command tour had been at a training establishment which, if true, is ridiculous.
Yep. Training units are command appointments, if you have had one, it makes getting a field command very difficult.

There is a reason that RMAS staff have to be selected, rather than being sent from the regiments without being filtered. Personally I think this needs to apply across the entire training estate, phase 1, phase 2, regular, reserve, OTC. Including reserves posting to ATUs and OTCs

Hard work to get going and maintain, yes, worth it, I think so.
 

Sexton Blake

War Hero
My boy is doing a school project and has chosen to cover the battle for Goose Geeen. I think he is looking at the general reasons we won despite the superior Argentine numbers.
I will be using some of the books previously mentioned on these pages and some books I have in my collection.
They are;
March to the South Atlanic, Nick Vaux.
Razors' Edge. The unofficial history of the Falklands War. Hugh Bicheno.
The Argentine fight for the Falklands. Martin Middlebrook.

I also have Sea Harrier over the Falklands and Two sides of Hell by Vincent Bramley.
Are there any other books that anyone else could recommend?

My boy will be reading the relevant threads to see what has been said and I may have to ask questions for him. (To protect the site from the general ramblings of a 14 year old)

Many thanks.
Not sure if the 'moment has passed' but along with all the other brilliant books others here have mentioned may I offer 2 more.

1. Nine Battles to Stanley has perhaps a shorter synopsis of the battle for Goose Green which may make your son's (or yours!) job a tadge easier.

2. The Media and the Falklands Campaign should your son attract additional 'points' for looking at other aspects of that battle aside from just UK mil v Arg mil.

I attach a pic of both books from my collection and although it is my No1 topic of reading and research I am very mindful that I joined in 1983 and there are posters here who served there in 82.

In my very humble opinion the post from Hairy Monster (post no 3) lists the best 2 books of all.

Regards
 

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Sexton Blake

War Hero
Apologies,

Meant to add that 'Los Chicos de la guerra' gives a version from the Argentine perspective.
 

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Phil Neame was, of course, originally commissioned into the RAF Regiment.

I find it interesting that Keeble, Neame and Crossland all went on to command TA Regts/Bns. I've always thought that Para Regt posted rather better officers to it's TA Bns than other regiments tended to. qv Jacko did a stint as a Trg Maj at some point.
I walked the ground at Goose Green with Phil Neame and John Crossland - both incredibly humble gents who gave insight on what happened that morning, including being pinned down, being ordered to stay put and the very complicated plan. I've also met David Chaundler, who - in my opinion - lacked the humility and general warmth of the other two. Indeed interesting that that Keeble/Crossland/Neame went on to TA/Trg Comds, and retired as OF4/5s. Chaundler finished up as a Brigadier.

Then, as now, there seems to be no correlation between op experience and career progression!
 
John Geddes was in Patrol Company. This is an excellent doco on the Battle of Goose Green with John Geddes and Phil Neame. Also there are appearances by Major Dair Farrar-Hockley and Major John Crossland.


I walked the ground at Goose Green with Phil Neame and John Crossland - both incredibly humble gents who gave insight on what happened that morning, including being pinned down, being ordered to stay put and the very complicated plan. I've also met David Chaundler, who - in my opinion - lacked the humility and general warmth of the other two. Indeed interesting that that Keeble/Crossland/Neame went on to TA/Trg Comds, and retired as OF4/5s. Chaundler finished up as a Brigadier.

Then, as now, there seems to be no correlation between op experience and career progression!
There is an old truism, which applies to all the services (and civvie street if the truth were known) - you don't get to high rank by sticking your neck out on the battlefield, you get to high rank by hanging around HQs sucking up to those who can promote you.
 

Tuffty

War Hero
There is an old truism, which applies to all the services (and civvie street if the truth were known) - you don't get to high rank by sticking your neck out on the battlefield, you get to high rank by hanging around HQs sucking up to those who can promote you.
i totally agree with you, as i said to my son when he joined up "tell them what they want to hear, NOT what you think they should hear". The truth tends to hurt some peoples egos
 
i totally agree with you, as i said to my son when he joined up "tell them what they want to hear, NOT what you think they should hear". The truth tends to hurt some peoples egos
After the Manchester terror attack the chief fire officer was replaced by a woman who had never attended a fire - she had got all the way to the top via the HR route. Funnily enough, I worked for a simulation company where two of the MDs had come up the same way.
 
Phil Neame was, of course, originally commissioned into the RAF Regiment.

I find it interesting that Keeble, Neame and Crossland all went on to command TA Regts/Bns. I've always thought that Para Regt posted rather better officers to it's TA Bns than other regiments tended to. qv Jacko did a stint as a Trg Maj at some point.
As I have said before on other threads before, all the regular Officers, and SNCO's in 10 Para from 1991 to 1999 were first class from the CO's, Adj, Trg Offr, to the RSM, PSI's and NRPS including the PSAO. I am sure it was the same in 4 Para and 15 Para.

Phil Neame was the CO when I got there but only for three months. He went off to climb Everest after that, and I think that he was happy to achieve Lt Col and the consolation prize as CO of a Para TA Bn. Less stress and hassle and time to concentrate on his climbing and planning for Everest which appeared to be his big passion.

Robert Kershaw took over and he had already got his post army career as a military historian mapped out after the success of 'It never snows in September', We finished with Simon Barry. They were all good blokes and very capable officers who probably didn't want to be involved with in the rat race to the stars, and all of them were very successful in their post army careers.

The RSM and the PSI's usually either came back as NRPS or became LE officers. Jacko was Trg Offr with 15 Jock Para on Exercise Bold Guard in Northern Germany in 1974 when a number of soldiers were drowned after being dropped by mistake into the Kiel canal. Apparently the canal should have been closed, but the German officer responsible for doing this, failed to do it, and the RAF C130 crews mistook the lights for a Polish ship going through the canal for the DZ marker with tragic results. I think I read at the time that the officer later committed suicide.
 

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