Seadogs, Soldiers & Airmen.

click on thumbnails for enlarged photo.


Jan Toomey R.N. with wife Bertha.



Eddie O'Grady

Please click on photo to be taken to Vincent's tribute to his Dad. Includes photos of Eddie's wartime service.



I'd been after David for ages in order to get information from him regarding his service in the Army Intelligence Corps. He finally sent me the details and after a very interesting evening in the Atlantic Inn, chatting over a few pints of Lager, I couldn't help but come away feeling rather 'humble' after listening to his stories. I think the most impressive part of the evening was when he almost dismissively let slip that he was awarded the British Empire Medal for his work in Dhofar back in the 70's while temporarily attached to the SAS.    He joined as a 'Private' and retired as a 'Major'.

Maj. David Duncan B.E.M.  

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6 Feb 64 : Enlisted in the Army Intelligence Corps and trained in their Depot at Maresfield, Sussex.

Nov 64: posted to the Int Sect of HQ 4 Guards Bde in Iserlohn, W. Germany.

May 67: posted to 3 Int & Security (Sy) Coy, West Berlin.

Dec 69: posted to HQ 5 Sy Coy, Hannover, W.Germany.

Sep 70: attached to 22 SAS for Op STORM in Dhofar Province, Oman. (Awarded B.E.M. for services rendered.)

Apr 71: posted to Counter Intelligence (CI) Sect, N. Ireland.

Dec 71: posted to 11 Sy Coy, Cyprus.

May 74: posted to 52 Sy Sect, Hannover.

Oct 76: commissioned and posted to the British Commanders’ in Chief Mission to the Soviet Forces in Germany. Stationed in W. Berlin, some duties in E Germany.

Jan 80: posted to 51 Sy Sect, Celle, W.Germany as the Sect Commander.

Jan 82: posted to the Australian School of Military Intelligence (SMI) in Canungra, Queensland as an exchange instructor.

Jul 84: posted to the UK SMI at Ashford, Kent as an instructor.

Sep 85: temporary officer commanding (OC) of 90 Sy Sect, Hounslow, London.

Feb 86: posted to Fortress HQ, Gibraltar as the Army Int & Sy staff officer.

Mar 88: posted to 9 Sy Coy, Wilton as the OC. Sects throughout GB.

Dec 89: posted to Int Centre, Ashford.

Mar 90: deployed with British Military Advisory & Training Team, Namibia.

Oct 90: posted to Defence Int & Sy School, Ashford as senior instructor, Intelligence Corps Training Branch.

Jul 93: retired!

This is an extract from the Citation and an official article regarding Operation 'Storm'.

British Empire Medal

Sergeant David Ian DUNCAN, Intelligence Corps.


                “Sgt Duncan served with 22 SAS on Operation STORM in Dhofar Province , Southern Oman from September 1970 to March 1971.  He was deployed at short notice from his parent unit in Germany to provide intelligence Support in the field to SAS elements assisting the Sultan’s Armed Forces (SAF) engaged in counter-insurgency operations in Dhofar.  He was responsible for setting up an office, together with JNCOs from the Corps, which processed all available information on the precarious local situation and produced intelligence from it.  He also worked closely with the two Corps Warrant Officers who were Arabic speakers and involved in debriefing the growing numbers of surrendered enemy personnel.  The latter became a prime source of HUMINT.  Eventually, in addition to his main role in support of an SAS squadron, Sgt Duncan also helped the SAF with regard to intelligence.  For his contribution he was awarded the British Empire Medal (Meritorious Service).”




                Dave Duncan was subsequently commissioned and commanded a security section in Celle , BAOR.  He later rose to Major and after he retired from the Corps became the Intelligence Corps Recruiting Officer.  At the time of writing he is still serving in an RO2 post at the HQ in Chicksands.


Operation STORM           

STORM was primarily an SAS operation in support of the Sultan of Oman’s forces to crush the communist-inspired insurrection in Dhofar.  It was combined with a ‘hearts and minds’ programme which included delivering medical aid to those living in the mountainous area of Dhofar; veterinary aid for their animals; a ‘psyops’ programme designed to wean rebels off communist propaganda; a well-planned and executed intelligence-gathering operation which would support all of the foregoing and, above all, a reliable supply of water for the outlying villages and settlements. 

                Much of this tended to be frowned upon by the ruler, Sultan Sa’id.  However, his removal from power by his son changed all that and within hours of him coming to power the new Sultan Qaboos (who had received military training in the UK ) was the proud possessor of his very own SAS bodyguards.

                Parallel to the ‘hearts and minds’ campaign was an ‘amnesty’ campaign for surrendered enemy personnel.  This attracted some criticism at the time but the enemy defections may have helped to speed up a split between the communists and the Islamic traditionalists.  The attempt by the communists to violently suppress this revolution only resulted in mass defections to the government cause.  Former rebels were re-trained and formed into irregular units known as ‘firqats’ (pronounced ‘furka’, the ‘t’ is silent in Arabic).  They were trained by SAS personnel who had undergone rapid language training before small parties were attached to ‘firqat’ units. 

                Perhaps one of the more notable events during this campaign was the operation (JAGUAR) to take and secure a rebel base in the village of Jibjat .  The SAS component consisted of ten men accompanied by ‘firqat’ soldiers.  The group advanced fifteen miles over harsh terrain with both sides using HMGs and mortars.  One SAS soldier was killed and two wounded.  This was followed by the now (in)famous Battle of Mirbat on 19 July 1972 .  However, that is another story, albeit well worth the telling.        


W.E.M. Tim Hicks R.N. & R01(T) Stuart Hitchens R.N.
Photo taken approx. 1982

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Tim joined in1980 & served aboard HMS Glamorgan, a 'County' class guided missile Destroyer. Stuart joined in 1979 and served aboard HMS Bristol, the only Type 82 Destroyer in the Royal Navy. Both men served in the Falkland's crisis.

M.E.(1) Gerald Thompson R.N.
Photo taken approx. 1964

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Gerald is very reluctant to part with information and photos, so we had to pinch this one. I'll add information if I can squeeze it out of him but as far as I know, he joined in 1961 and served 11 years. He served on a variety of vessels including, HMS Eagle. I met him and his girlfriend, (who later became his wife) in the NAAFI Club in Plymouth in 1964, 2 days before I myself flew out to the Far East. They had only just met and he was still trying to impress her. 

Ch/Tech. Anthony J Shave (RAF)

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3rd from Left

Tony joined the RAF in 1946 and served in Suez, Singapore, Gan, Northern Ireland & Scotland. He rose to the rank of 'Chief Technician' and while serving, won many trophies for his marksmanship, for which he is still widely respected. Tony was mainly involved with the Air/Sea Rescue launches and was also based at RAF Mountbatten, near Plymouth, where incidentally, Group Captain 'Teddy Burling', previous owner of Holgates hotel, was for a time the Commanding Officer.

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Mk.1a R.T.T.L. (Range Target Towing Launch) In the background is the 'Wave Victor', a replenishment ship that during the 60's had been based in 'Gan', an Island in the Indian Ocean, now officially part of the Maldives. Up until the 70's Gan had been a British RAF base and a refuelling stop for the Royal Navy. My ship (HMS Diana) actually called into Gan in early 1965 when I was in the Navy and took on fuel from that very ship.

L/Cpl. Lucas. Frank 
(better known as Tony)

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(photo taken in Palestine approx.1944)

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(Service Commendation signed by General Paget)


K.P. (Sam) Guy

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1960: Sam with Uncle Roy Guy who was the 'Pilot' here in Scilly for several years.

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1962: "The Cornwall Tech. years. Here outside our 'digs' along with other overseas students".
 Some may recognize Danny Green on the extreme left, (A great soccer player) and behind him, John Morley. 

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1963: 'Cadet' Guy 2nd from Right. Just about to get out of training and go off to sea.

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Early 80's: Now, like his Uncle Roy, Sam was a qualified Trinity House 'Pilot'. One of the many ships he has taken into his care was the famous 'Sir Winston Churchill', a sail training vessel, on one of her several visits to Scilly. 

These days Sam is a member of the 'Fowey Pilot's Association' and is based at Par in Cornwall.

Other local Servicemen

 Ord/Sea. Lucas G.R. ('QA2') (Quarters Armourer 2nd class)

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    This picture was taken in 1964 the day after I had received my draft papers and been informed that I would be flying out to join HMS Diana, a 'Daring' Class destroyer stationed in Singapore. I had just been through 12 months of punishing basic training at HMS Ganges up in Suffolk and after a further month of intensive gunnery training at HMS Cambridge, a gunnery school & range at Wembury Point, Plymouth, I was about to be unleashed upon the enemies of the Realm.

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Diana on manoeuvres. (Usually at meal times)

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Diana at speed (34.5 knots top)
Faster than most local speedboats and quite an impressive sight when under full steam!

This page will be updated when I get more volunteers come forward.