Some 40 years ago this week, the Royal Navy Type 21 frigate HMS Ardent (F184) was a very new ship, having just been completed by Yarrow just over four years prior.
On 21 May 1982, while in Falkland Sound and supporting Operation Sutton by bombarding the Argentine airstrip at Goose Green with her 4.5-inch Mark 8 mount, Ardent was attacked by at least three incoming waves of Argentine Skyhawks and IAI Daggers inside of an hour.
The airstrikes caused Ardent to sink the next day, with one in eight of the ship’s company lost.
Now a retired commander, Ken Enticknap was a 28-year-old Chief Petty Officer on Ardent, and tells his story, below.
Admiral Lord West told the Western Morning News that Prime Minister David Cameron “doesn’t quite get it” when it comes to defense and that politicians only paid “lip service” to naval power.
“I am horrified our naval flotilla now comprises only 19 frigates and destroyers,” said Lord West. “In the Falklands, in the first month of fighting, we had four sunk and 14 damaged. That makes you think. We seem to have forgotten that when you fight you lose things.