Liberty Lodge has a facial thanks to Interserve
Our sincere thanks go to Iain Thom from Interserve, who kindly agreed to re-stain Liberty Lodge. Ian gathered a team of
men from Interserve who all worked extremely hard to weatherproof the Lodge for a further few years, it is now in pristine condition.
Baz Avery, the 'Marathon Man' raises £2054.09
The FVF would like to thank Baz Avery, who served on HMS Coventry in the 1982 which was sunk in action on 25 May 1982 with the tragic loss of 19 men,
for all his support and hard work in raising funds for the FVF and Liberty Lodge. This is the second fundraiser he has done for us but this one took a
lot of stamina.
Baz said: "With the Falklands being over 8,000 miles away from the UK it makes it difficult for Veterans to revisit the Islands and pay their respects
to fallen comrades.
Baz proudly presents a cheque to Ellen Davis, Liberty Lodge Manager with Hamish Wylie to her left along with other Visiting Veterans. Since the
presentation more donations have been received.
I have been fortunate enough to do this - largely due to the existence of Liberty Lodge located in Stanley, the capital of the Falklands.
Liberty Lodge is a fully-equipped accommodation in beautiful surroundings overlooking Stanley Harbour. This is used by the Veterans during their stay and
provides a wonderful environment to relax in when they're not visiting the battlefields, cemeteries and locations important to them. For me it played a
major part in my coming to terms with that whole episode in my life and the loss of my shipmates."
Baz did a Marathon Row on Saturday, 29 October 2016 at Colne Valley Leisure Centre, Slaithwaite, Huddersfield and raised a total of £2,054.09. The total
included £442.37, thanks to a tremendous effort by Hamish Wylie and his staff at the Seafish Chandlery, based in the Falkland Islands. They did a great
job of collecting donations from the Falkland Islanders themselves. The FVF would like to give their sincere thanks to Baz's family and all his supporters
in raising this fantastic amount.
The Camping and Caravan Branch of SAMA82
Dickie Dawson says:
"The Camping and Caravan Branch of SAMA82 is a group of likeminded people who enjoy camping together in an informal way. We hold about 3
meets a year. At each meet we do some kind of fundraising for a chosen charity. Over recent years our chosen charity has been Liberty Lodge. Our main meet
is at Aeroventure Museum at Doncaster. This is a museum full of old aircraft and associated memorabilia. Part of the museum is set aside for a collection of
Falklands War artefacts; in fact, the collection is one of the largest in the UK. Our fundraising consists of raffles, scratch cards and other similar
Liberty Lodge Reception
A small reception was held at Liberty Lodge on 1 November 2015 when the CEO, Smokey Cole, visited the Islands.
It was a small affair to say thank you to our sponsors and some of the helpers in the Falkland Islands. Some of those in
attendance were His Excellency The Governor Colin Roberts CVO, Commodore Darren Bone RN, Commander British Forces South Atlantic
Islands and his wife Mrs Jessica Bone, Christina Williams representing Sodexo, John Foster, Managing Director and Roger Spink
representing the Falkland Island Company, Robert Rowlands representing Stanley Services and Andrea Clausen and Leeann Harris
from Falkland Island Tourist and Travel. A few of the dedicated drivers were also invited along with Gary Clement, MBE, FVF Trustee
who plays a major part in the success of Liberty Lodge and also the Veterans who were staying in the Lodge at the time and of course not
forgetting Ellen Davis, Liberty Lodge Manager.
Curly and Clare Elstow
and HE The Governor Colin Roberts
Peter Richardson (1982 Veteran)
and Cdre Darren Bone RN
Smokey Cole, CEO FVF and Christina Williams,
A note from our Chairman, Tony Davies OBE.
Adriana Groisman is an Argentinian journalist/photographer living in New York, who,
for the past decade or so has interviewed many Veterans as well as civilians involved in all sides of the Falklands War of 1982.
Voices of the Tempest, her book, contains many unbiased interviews and photographs dealing with the aftermath experienced by all since 1982.
A dedicated, historical, moving record reported as was spoken with many Veterans and families on both sides quoted. In the course of her work
Adriana visited The Falkland Islands, Great Britain and Argentina. A truly great record and one which deserves all our support.
The HOMEGROUND Anthem - Available from 31 March 2014 as download & CD.
The Homeground Anthem
Russell Watson - Ambassador of the FVF
All profit made from the sale of the single will go to the Falklands Veterans Foundation, Coming Home (Haig Trust)
and the Welsh Guards Afganistan Appeal. To hear a clip of the single please click on the video below.
Russell Watson becomes an Ambassador of the FVF and is presented a picture of Liberty Lodge and a South Atlantic tie by Simon
Weston at the Union Jack Club in December 2013.
To watch this presentation please click on the video below.
Gurkha Pilgrimage 2013
In October 2013, ABF The Soldiers' Charity, the national charity of the British Army, funded a Gurkha Pilgrimage (1/7 Gurkha Rifles) to
the Falkland Islands which was arranged by the FVF (read Dilli Gurung's account).
They visited between 12 - 18 October and were accommodated at FVF Liberty Lodge and with local families. The places they
visited whilst on the Islands included San Carlos Cemetery, Goose Green, Ajax Bay, Teal Inlet, Mount Kent and Mount William,
Two Sisters, Bluff Cove, Government House and a helicopter ride to Port Stephens. Quotes from a report written by Jai Seventh:
'The trip was a resounding success and a great experience for all the veterans. Everyone has immensely enjoyed the trip.
This trip was not only a chance to revisit the Falklands, but it was also a great opportunity to meet again with all the old
friends from the regiment with some of whom we had not met for many years. I on behalf of the Gurkha veterans group would like
to express my sincere gratitude to Derek 'Smokey' Cole and Colonel Tony Davies who made our dreams to revisit the Falklands come true.
Furthermore, thank you to Gary, Ellen, Joe and Maj Bishnu Ghale for their great contribution to the trip.
The most touching moment of the entire visits was visiting the memorial of those soldiers killed during the conflict and to see and
walk over the grounds where we lived and fought. It was a great experience and brought back all the great and distant memories out of us.'
click on the images below to view more detail
Outside Liberty Lodge
At Government House
Remembering Fallen Comrades
Support for Veterans
Neil Martin from the CRS (Catering & Rations Sqn) at MPC presented a cheque for £1,200 to the FVF after they held a
'Ready Steady Cook' charity event. Neil commented, "Liberty Lodge is not only a worthwhile cause but it is also one way in
which we can still support our Veterans and give them somewhere warm and safe to stay whilst on the Islands."
The FVF would like to thank Baz Avery (ex HMS Coventry) and Sarah for organising a Fundraising Night in May 2015 where they
raised an amazing £1,800. A thank you also goes to all who attended the event and helped raise the funds for Liberty Lodge.
Corporal Akash Tamang from 69 Gurkha Field Squadron, 36 Engineer Regt organised a charity event titled 'Gurkha 200 Falklands
Challenge' in April 2015. Eight men set off for the 200km challenge on 2 April and finished the whole challenge on 3 April 2015.
The route from Port San Carlos to Stanley via Goose Green was chosen to emulate the footsteps of 1/7 Duke of Edinburgh Own Gurkha
Rifles in the 1982 Campaign and the challenge took just under 38 hours. The FVF feel very fortunate to be one of the named charities
and Akash presented a cheque for £700 to Gary Clement MBE, Trustee of the FVF.
From left to right: Corporal Akash Tamang presenting cheque to Gary Clement, MBE
From left to right: Gary Clement MBE and Neil Martin
ABF The Soldiers' Charity, the national charity of the British Army, continually support the FVF and Liberty Lodge by
making annual donations which enables us to keep the Lodge up to a high standard for visiting
Army Veterans and their families, for which we are extremely grateful.
Serving personnel from MPC continue to support the FVF and Liberty Lodge. Lt Owen Miller from ISS SAI MPC and his boys raised £250
after spending an afternoon cart racing. 1435 Flight did a charity run (35 miles) and raised £1435.00. Cpl Lauren McPherson took a group
of people to Liberty Lodge and painted all the verandas.
Holbeach ACF raised £4,000 by participating in several sponsored events during the year. Tony Davies OBE, FVF Chairman and Smokey Cole, FVF CEO
visited the Cadet HQ in Holbeach to receive the cheque and Tony was invited to inspect the cadets on parade. It was a very smart affair with Tony
addressing the cadets and staff and thanking them for giving their time to support the FVF.
Shepherd Neame Brewery, Kent kindly produced a 30th Anniversary Ale and some of the proceeds from the sale of this, £4,000 were donated to
1st Anniversary Reception at Liberty Lodge
The Falklands Veterans Foundation held a reception on Sunday, 31 January 2010 to celebrate Liberty Lodge's 1st Anniversary.
In attendance were His Excellency The Governor of the Falkland Islands Alan Huckle, Commodore Phillip Thicknesse, Commander
British Forces South Atlantic Islands and the many local sponsors who have assisted the FVF during the Lodge's first year.
The CEO FVF, Derek 'Smokey' Cole made a short speech and framed photographs of Liberty Lodge were presented to various sponsors
as a token of appreciation for their continued support. Naming but a few, Sodexo, Falkland Island Company, Stanley Services and
Falkland Islands Tours and Travel Ltd. The FVF are very grateful to them for their continued support.
click on the images below to view more detail
Sponsors attending reception
in Falkland Islands
Visiting Veterans with
Commodore Phillip Thicknesse
Left to right: Tony Banks, Gary Clement,
SAMA FI Trust & Smokey Cole
Royal Visit to Liberty Lodge
HRH The Princess Royal visited Liberty Lodge on 24 March 2009; six Veterans were present for this memorable occasion. HRH The Princess Royal
stopped at the Falkland Islands on her way to a planned visit to South Georgia.
HRH spent 1 and a half hours at the Lodge viewing the facilities and chatting to the Veterans and several local residents that had also been
invited to the small reception.
Freedom of the Borough of Gosport
click on the images below to view more detail
On 24 August 2005, more than 150 Falklands Veterans gathered in Gosport for a poignant ceremony and parade to be granted the Honorary
Freedom of the Borough.
An emotional ceremony was followed by a march past from the Falklands Gardens to the Town Hall, where the salute was taken by Lady Fieldhouse, Gosport
Mayor Graham Burgess and Rear Admiral Jeremy Larkin DSO.
The Veterans felt honoured that the town had taken them under its wing and made sure that their bravery will never be forgotten.