LMA Falkland Islands

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Dowsett Boy
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LMA Falkland Islands

Post #1 by Dowsett Boy » Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:39 pm

There must be forum members with experiences of this imo dreadful job.
I went out there in August 1984 and have never experienced 5 months of total boredom .
The journey getting there was an experience itself 14 hours Heathrow to Jbourg then 2 hours to Capetown.
Then 12 days on The MV England through lots of timezones.
The first couple of weeks were a novelty getting paid for doing nothing just standing around watching machines.
To cut a long story short after about 6 weeks of doing nothing a group of us stopped going to work and just hung around the camp playing table tennis.
We were all called into to see management and told if you didnt go out to work then we would all get charged for board and lodgings and fare home.
We argued the case if there was something for us to do we would be back to work like shot but not to many of us were keen to stand outside for 12 hours watching machines.
Quite a few of the lads did as they were told, but a group of us carried refusing .
The soonest we could get back was on the December Boat so had quite a few long days to endure.
The threats from management were regular but just fell on deaf ears of most but some bottled it and went back to standing watching machines under the watchfull eye of a total bastard called John Currie .
I remember sitting on the plane going there talking to this tough looking aggresive Scotsman saying how he was going to do 3 years out there.
The same Scotsman wasnt the same man on the journey back sat on the boat crying his eyes out.
When arriving back in the UK found I was paid for all time I was out there including travel.
It was certainly an eyeopener .


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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #2 by innes » Mon Mar 25, 2013 9:21 pm

Dowsett Boy wrote:There must be forum members with experiences of this imo dreadful job.
I went out there in August 1984 and have never experienced 5 months of total boredom .
The journey getting there was an experience itself 14 hours Heathrow to Jbourg then 2 hours to Capetown.
Then 12 days on The MV England through lots of timezones.
The first couple of weeks were a novelty getting paid for doing nothing just standing around watching machines.
To cut a long story short after about 6 weeks of doing nothing a group of us stopped going to work and just hung around the camp playing table tennis.
We were all called into to see management and told if you didnt go out to work then we would all get charged for board and lodgings and fare home.
We argued the case if there was something for us to do we would be back to work like shot but not to many of us were keen to stand outside for 12 hours watching machines.
Quite a few of the lads did as they were told, but a group of us carried refusing .
The soonest we could get back was on the December Boat so had quite a few long days to endure.
The threats from management were regular but just fell on deaf ears of most but some bottled it and went back to standing watching machines under the watchfull eye of a total bastard called John Currie .
I remember sitting on the plane going there talking to this tough looking aggresive Scotsman saying how he was going to do 3 years out there.
The same Scotsman wasnt the same man on the journey back sat on the boat crying his eyes out.
When arriving back in the UK found I was paid for all time I was out there including travel.
It was certainly an eyeopener .

Was out there for 14 months contract as a fitter,did seven months came home on leave and went back for five months ,always had plenty to do but it was pretty boring,job was badly planned with a lack of spares,oil,tyres,tools was using a Volvo ADT as a breakdown vehicle cos ther were no land rovers available,unless you counted the ones sat outside the offices all day


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Dowsett Boy
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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #3 by Dowsett Boy » Tue Mar 26, 2013 5:34 pm

A friend of mine Ivor Hannant was out their for 3 years he was on a crane.
I think I could have handled being out there if I had something to do for 12 hours ,but 24 hours of boredom no way .
As I had stopped drinking no way I could have stuck it out.
Im sure a lot of the men out there were long term unemployed from the north east and scouseland .A lot were only there to get away for a few months.
Never forget the buses which were used to transport workers around windows flying out because of the bumpy roads.
LMA must have made a mint out the unpaid overtime.As I remember all overtime was only paid out at the completion of your contract .
It was a very small % that managed to last the full contract.


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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #4 by LDK » Tue Mar 26, 2013 11:25 pm

Dowsett Boy wrote:A friend of mine Ivor Hannant was out their for 3 years he was on a crane.
I think I could have handled being out there if I had something to do for 12 hours ,but 24 hours of boredom no way .
As I had stopped drinking no way I could have stuck it out.
Im sure a lot of the men out there were long term unemployed from the north east and scouseland .A lot were only there to get away for a few months.
Never forget the buses which were used to transport workers around windows flying out because of the bumpy roads.
LMA must have made a mint out the unpaid overtime.As I remember all overtime was only paid out at the completion of your contract .
It was a very small % that managed to last the full contract.


Tony, I have to agree with Innes, who I know from those days, I always seemed to have plenty to do out there too.
I am pretty sure that I know the crane driver you mention too, guy with a beard that came from norfolk? I worked on a job with him a few years before the Falklands.
Of the guys I knew on equipment i can't think of many that quit. After finishing my first 14 month contract I went back out on a 6 month one, only did three months of it but got payed up in full. Funny thing was within a few weeks of getting back home I got a letter asking me to go back for another 6 months.
Their were some real odd balls out there at times, and quite a lot of guys that had never worked in construction before but also enough men that had been around, to get the job done.
Being there was a drag for the most part but their was some good craic too.


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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #5 by SRB » Wed Mar 27, 2013 7:34 am

My dad did best part of 2 years out there with Bowmaker / Finnings, i'll have to dig the pics out the loft......

SB
He who hingeth aboot, getteth hee-haw


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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #6 by LDK » Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:16 am

Stu, I will try and remember to do the same, I have quite a few with your dad on them. I know I have said that before but I have not been home for a year and it is looking like I wont make it back till the end of October. Its in my head now but who nows if it will be come then?
Russ


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Dowsett Boy
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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #7 by Dowsett Boy » Wed Mar 27, 2013 2:23 pm

LDK wrote:
Dowsett Boy wrote:A friend of mine Ivor Hannant was out their for 3 years he was on a crane.
I think I could have handled being out there if I had something to do for 12 hours ,but 24 hours of boredom no way .
As I had stopped drinking no way I could have stuck it out.
Im sure a lot of the men out there were long term unemployed from the north east and scouseland .A lot were only there to get away for a few months.
Never forget the buses which were used to transport workers around windows flying out because of the bumpy roads.
LMA must have made a mint out the unpaid overtime.As I remember all overtime was only paid out at the completion of your contract .
It was a very small % that managed to last the full contract.


Tony, I have to agree with Innes, who I know from those days, I always seemed to have plenty to do out there too.
I am pretty sure that I know the crane driver you mention too, guy with a beard that came from norfolk? I worked on a job with him a few years before the Falklands.
Of the guys I knew on equipment i can't think of many that quit. After finishing my first 14 month contract I went back out on a 6 month one, only did three months of it but got payed up in full. Funny thing was within a few weeks of getting back home I got a letter asking me to go back for another 6 months.
Their were some real odd balls out there at times, and quite a lot of guys that had never worked in construction before but also enough men that had been around, to get the job done.
Being there was a drag for the most part but their was some good craic too.


Ivor did have a beard and did come from Norfolk.
Prior to going out to the Falklands Ivor was on Tarmacs .
On the topic of oddballs out there you are spot on .Think a lot could have been sectioned.
,
Were you out there when some guys got injured when a charge went off which they were unaware of.


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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #8 by innes » Wed Mar 27, 2013 2:40 pm

Dowsett Boy wrote:
LDK wrote:
Dowsett Boy wrote:A friend of mine Ivor Hannant was out their for 3 years he was on a crane.
I think I could have handled being out there if I had something to do for 12 hours ,but 24 hours of boredom no way .
As I had stopped drinking no way I could have stuck it out.
Im sure a lot of the men out there were long term unemployed from the north east and scouseland .A lot were only there to get away for a few months.
Never forget the buses which were used to transport workers around windows flying out because of the bumpy roads.
LMA must have made a mint out the unpaid overtime.As I remember all overtime was only paid out at the completion of your contract .
It was a very small % that managed to last the full contract.


Tony, I have to agree with Innes, who I know from those days, I always seemed to have plenty to do out there too.
I am pretty sure that I know the crane driver you mention too, guy with a beard that came from norfolk? I worked on a job with him a few years before the Falklands.
Of the guys I knew on equipment i can't think of many that quit. After finishing my first 14 month contract I went back out on a 6 month one, only did three months of it but got payed up in full. Funny thing was within a few weeks of getting back home I got a letter asking me to go back for another 6 months.
Their were some real odd balls out there at times, and quite a lot of guys that had never worked in construction before but also enough men that had been around, to get the job done.
Being there was a drag for the most part but their was some good craic too.


Ivor did have a beard and did come from Norfolk.
Prior to going out to the Falklands Ivor was on Tarmacs .
On the topic of oddballs out there you are spot on .Think a lot could have been sectioned.
,
Were you out there when some guys got injured when a charge went off which they were unaware of.

I remember a shot going off when a Cat 225 with a hammer got the steel down the hole and there was a stick off gelly at the bottom off the hole, it went off and a couple of guys got injured but not badly I;m sure Russ (LDK) will remember that incident too, the guys that got injured were made up to gangermen if I remember correctly, every cloud has a silver lining!!!!
Innes


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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #9 by LDK » Wed Mar 27, 2013 3:58 pm

Innes, yes I remember that. I also remember being in the tea cabin one break time and a rock about the size of a hard hat coming through the roof and landing on a table :o At that time they blasted during most of or breaks. Used get the odd stick of jelly in the fill too.
You used to work with a good crew Innes, what was the name of the foreman fitter you worked with when the Loon was there ...... biggish feller and real nice guy?


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Re: LMA Falkland Islands

Post #10 by innes » Wed Mar 27, 2013 5:32 pm

LDK wrote:Innes, yes I remember that. I also remember being in the tea cabin one break time and a rock about the size of a hard hat coming through the roof and landing on a table :o At that time they blasted during most of or breaks. Used get the odd stick of jelly in the fill too.
You used to work with a good crew Innes, what was the name of the foreman fitter you worked with when the Loon was there ...... biggish feller and real nice guy?

Big John Mc Corkindale from Kinlochleven in Scotland,Yes he was a good guy but most of the guys on the earthmoving were good craic anyway, had a few good sessions with your good self, changed days now, I'm working mostly on rigs and shipyards worldwide but miss the craic of the old days


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