Army ships question

Danny McG

"I'd buy that for a dollar"
Sep 9, 2016
Cumbria UK
Back in the 1980's, once the Falklands Conflict was over, they used a couple of old ships, with a load of shipping containers bolted onto the decks, to house all the garrison troops.
However, in the interim, they had a lot of extra vessels for the same purpose.
That is what I have faint memories of from the news and documentaries - I recall some fairly large size ship being shown and apparently this was an ARMY ship, crewed by Army personnel.
Does the British Army still have it's own, not Royal Navy, ships?
Or was this a hybrid special ship just for the Falklands?
Are you thinking of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA). This is a civilian-manned fleet owned by the United Kingdom's Ministry of Defence. Both the Sir Tristan and Sir Galahad were part of this. I believe that at one time at least the Sir Galahad was run on behalf of the army by the British-India Steam Navigation Company before going over to the RFA.

I very much doubt there was a hybrid special ship just for the Falklands, during the war or its aftermath. The whole task force was a hastily cobbled together mash up of vessels. From, Royal Navy vessels, container ships, cruise ships, to roll on and off ferries. It was a very close run thing. Though the propaganda of the Thatcher government at the time would have you think other-wise.

Suggest you read, Logistics in the Falklands War: A Case Study in Expeditionary Warfare, by Kenneth L. Privratsky, All in the Same Boat: The Untold Story of the British Ferry Crew Who Helped Win the Falklands War, by Warren FitzGerald and Forgotten Voices of the Falklands: The Real Story of the Falklands War by Hugh McManners.

Hope that helps.
Thanks, this set me off digging a bit more and I came across these Army landing craft thingies,
Ramped craft logistic - Wikipedia
they were indeed used as garrison support in the Falklands, and crewed/operated by the Army. However it states that 'from early eighties' they were gradually replacing some older vessel called a RAMP POWERED LIGHTER and a picture of one of those lighters looks like what I remember seeing at Port Stanley on the news.

Last edited: