THE BAND THAT WENT TO WAR
A new book has been released today, that may be of interest to ex-RMB subscribers:
I was given an advance
copy of the book and wrote the following review, which you are most
welcome to use, if you wish to include it on ex-RMB:
"As we approach the 40th Anniversary of the Falklands War, it serves as a timely reminder of what Britain achieved at that time, by putting together a Task Force in a matter of days and sailing 8,000 miles to the Falkland Islands.
When setting sail from Southampton in early April 1982, very few of the Band of HM Royal Marines Commando Forces Plymouth, would realise what an important cog in the gears of War they would become.
Brian Short's excellent book deals with every task the Band undertook during their 3 months 3 days on SS Canberra, from the time-honoured stretcher bearing duties to guarding Prisoners of War, often taking a humorous look at life on board the requisitioned Ocean Liner, but also covering the many sad duties.
Reading the names of the Commando Forces RM Band ('Canberra’s Own' as they became known) I soon realised that almost a quarter of the Band have crossed the bar. What Brian has achieved is a lasting History, not just for those of us who remain, but for the families of the Musicians who are no longer with us.
I may know a lot of what happened in 1982, as I was in the Band. But there is someone I didn’t know a lot about and that is the man himself, Brian Short. His book tells us about his father (also Brian Short) killed at Suez, 2 months before he was born. Then follows a rather troubled upbringing, until the time that he joined the Royal Marines Band Service. It also covers life after the RMBS, his time in the Old Bill, then working as a local businessman and the resurrection of the Sergeants’ Mess Pantomimes.
One of Brian’s greatest qualities is his sense of humour (which shines through in the book!) His ability to make people smile is infectious, even during the Argentine Air raids in San Carlos, aka Bomb Alley."
There are so many books about the RM Commando involvement in the Falklands War, it's good to hear the RM Band perspective.