Support from the Royal Navy 1 - Supporting the families of HMS Coventry during Falklands War

  • PDF
  • Print
  • E-mail
Diana Hart-DykeDiana Hart Dyke

Diana grew up in a naval family. She married her husband David in 1968 having met him whilst he was the Navigating Officer of HMS Gurkha. They have two daughters.

During the Falklands War David was Captain of HMS Coventry. Throughout the conflict, Diana was involved in providing support to the families of the crew. When the ship sank, David was injured and some of the crew lost their lives. On his return the family supported David through during his recuperation and in coming to terms with the loss of both the ship and those who were killed onboard.

Later in his career Diana accompanied David when he was working in Washington DC and witnessed his transition to civilian life after his retirement in 1990.


How did the Navy support the families of HMS Coventry during the Falklands War?


Get the Flash Player to see this player.

Extract Text (Duration 1.39)

D Hart Dyke: I certainly did, obviously during the Falklands War, had a great system of support going and I have to... I must actually say how wonderful the Navy was, it was such a help to me at that time. Because I wanted to find a way of getting all the families together and so they enabled me to have this enormous tea party down at HMS Sultan at Gosport. And people came from all over the country, the parents of sailors, you know, from as far afield as Wales and Yorkshire, and that was entirely due to the Navy supporting me in that. And it was a tremendous advantage that. And so, particularly during the Falklands War, there were great systems of support going on, yes.

Interviewer: Tell me a little bit more about that tea party, when did it happen?

D Hart Dyke: Quite early on in the war I think it was. I can't remember exactly when, but I felt rather than just having my address and telephone number we must... you know, it would be nice... I think it was particularly difficult for families living away from naval ports because they were the only people, very often in their part of the country who were involved in the Falklands War and people around them hadn't any idea what they were going through. So I just felt, for them all to be able to get together would, and talk to somebody else in the same situation would be a help. And I think they did find so, and having met them there of course, then it was much easier to keep in touch after that ‘cause I knew the people, I could put a face to the name.

Support for travelling back to St. Vincent

1.22 mins - mp3 File

Lack of support from naval welfare, 1970s

3.08 mins - mp3 File

Role of RNCOM website

2.25 mins - mp3 File

"families are clambering for any information they can get"

1.18 mins - mp3 File

Differences between married and unmarried partners

1.56 mins - mp3 File

Range of problems dealt with by NPFS

0.52 mins - mp3 File

Support for bereaved families

1.31 mins - mp3 File

Description of Naval Personnel Family Service

0.45 mins - mp3 File

0.34 mins - mp3 File

"He wasn't allowed leave to come home"

0.46 mins - mp3 File

More willingness to ask for help

1.07 mins - mp3 File

Support for families of HMS Coventry during Falklands War

1.39 mins - mp3 File