Civic welcome for Falkland Islanders in Honiton

Mayor wears full robes to greet visitors.

FALKLAND Islanders are not waiting until March to meet Honiton man Alan Rowe MBE.

A family from the Falklands visited him at his Honiton barber’s shop last week - to explain why they support his Baton charity.

Campbell Kirkham, 49, his partner Tina Hirtle, 41, her daughter Holly, seven, and niece Zoe, 13, were greeted by the Mayor of Honiton, Councillor Peter Fleming, a keen supporter of the Baton.

“My aunty, Trudy McCurdy, lives in Honiton and knows Alan,” said Tina.

“We were over visiting when she found out Alan was going to the Falklands.

“Alan and his wife, Pauline, came and met us and gave us a talk about the charity.”

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Tina said Falkland Islanders support British troops 100 per cent.

“We think what they do is an excellent job,” she told The Midweek Herald. “We are grateful to them for what they did for us in the 1980s and I think what Alan is doing is fabulous.”

The day the Argentinians invaded is etched in Tina’s mind like it happened just yesterday.

“We were in our house when they came in the early hours of the morning,” she said. “They made such a noise.

“In the morning, all we could see were big tanks and hundreds of Argentinians.

“They went to everybody’s house and searched for British service personnel.

“We could only go outside if we waved a white handkerchief.”

Tina added: “It was a scary experience and not something I would ever want to go through again.”

It is hoped that a link between Honiton and the Falkland Islands can be established as a result of Mr Rowe’s trip.

He is hoping that local schools will be interested in the initiative.

The Midweek Herald hopes to form a reciprocal partnership with The Penguin News, in the Falklands, in order to cover this story from both sides of the Atlantic.