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Staff Sergeant James Prescott

Incident Report

HMS Antelope, Falklands

  • May 23, 1982
  • HMS Antelope, Falklands



Falklands Conflict Staff Sergeant J. Prescott and WO II J. Phillips had on the 21st May 1982 removed a damaged fuze aboard HMS Argonaut a Leander Class Frigate as they were the most readily available team with the necessary equipment. On the 23rd May 1982 both men were tasked with two bombs aboard HMS Antelope a Type 21 Frigate, which had been bombed in Saint Carlos Waters whilst providing anti aircraft cover for the amphibious force. The bomb was not accessible till extensive debris was removed. The second bomb was seen to have a damaged fuze and being in the most dangerous condition. Both men attempted three times to remotely remove the fuze unsuccessfully. On their fourth attempt using different equipment, the bomb exploded. Although a blast route of open doors and hatches had been prepared, a fully fastened door at the forward end of the passageway where they stood was completely blown of. Staff Sergeant J. Prescott died instantly and WO II J. Phillips was seriously injured. Following the detonation of the bomb and other ensuing explosions, HMS Antelope was torn apart, the ship abandoned and it finally sank on the 24th May 1982. Staff Sergeant J. Prescott was posthumously awarded the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal. The CGM is a very rare naval award, given to Petty Officers and men of the Royal Navy and Sergeants and men of the Royal Marines it may also be awarded to equivalent ranks in the Army and Royal Air Force. WO II J. Philips was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross. Details extracted from Designed to Kill. Major. A. Hogben.

Personal Details

  • 23834301 Staff Sergeant
  • James Prescott
  • 49 EOD Squadron
  • 33 Engineer Regiment. EOD
James Prescott. Conspicuous Gallantry Medal. 49 EOD Squadron. 33 Engineer Regiment. EOD


  1. Charles Todd

    Whilst walking along the Kelvin Way between Glasgow and Milngavie I crossed the river via the “Jim Prescott Memorial Bridge”. His name will not be forgotten because of the generous and fitting tribute paid to him by his friends. The bridge is a practical and helpful way to assist walkers on their journey and an appropriate memorial to a brave member of the RE. Thank you, Jim and friends.

  2. robert corbett

    I used to play cards with Jim in boundary Hall , a really nice man.

    • Angela Dolan (Prescott)

      Jim Prescott was my father. It would be lovely to hear of how you knew him.

      • Paul w

        He was my mentor . I had his training manual for over 30 years and posted it back to the then Sergeant Major before moving abroad in 2015 . A great soldier and a gentleman . RIP SIR.

        • James McCulloch

          He gave his life bravely.

      • Paul Devonport

        Hello Angela – My name is Paul Devonport and I had the task of putting both men on the Stern of the Antelope to carry out their task. They both new what was in front of them. As they left my Raiding craft’ they both looked back at me with that stare only men in War can give. Very brave… they went about their business and the final result of the explosion. I was serving in 1st Raiding Squadron at the time of the conflict – hence with the boats we could move personnel about. What is more ironic my own son is in the Royal Engineers and in the bomb disposal unit, serving now in Northern Ireland effectively on active service. I was the last man to see them both disappear into the ‘Antelope’,

      • Dave Hiddleston

        Jim was my Troop Sgt in EOD we had a lot in common being Scottish he was a great guy and sadly missed

        • James McCulloch

          Thanks for your dedicated service.

      • Ian

        What brave men,I remember this happening and was serving in the RAF at the time. I was quite surprised today when I passed this lovely memorial. My Cousin Daniel ( Danny) McGeechan RSM with 59 Commando engineers during the Camapaign and wondered when I saw it, whether they may have known each other at some point before the war. Very poignant.

    • James McCulloch

      Was he Scottish?

  3. Mrs Rose Haddlesey nee Marie

    I will never forget this day. I will never forget this brave man and think of his family often. Wondering how they are doing. My father had just passed and Jim’s wife was so comforting. We had coffee and chatted about the events and the families future. As a military wife I have to say I’ve always felt looked after and the Engineers will always be my family.
    My Grandson has just passed his training and is now a Royal Marine Commando. I’m so proud of all our service men and women. 😘.

    • Angela Dolan (Prescott)

      HI Rose,
      I am Angela, the youngest daughter of Staff Sgt James Prescott. It was comforting to see your comment about my mum, who comforted you when your father passed, she was also taken too soon, passe 7 1/2 years ago in 2013. I would love to hear from you and how you knew my lovely mum- Theresa.

      • Rosemary Haddlesey

        Hi Angela
        I’m so sorry I’ve just seen your message after talking about the Falklands war and looking up your Dad. I’m sad to hear the news of your mum passing. I’m happy to be contacted and how you all managed after you left the army xxx

      • Yvonne Pemberton

        Hi what age was your father when he passed. I help complete details for British Troops Remembered on Facebook.

  4. Fiona Bell

    I often walk my dog across Jim Prescott’s bridge and always stop at the memorial for a moment before moving on. I’m moved to read about this brave soldier and finally learn his story.

  5. val barnes

    hello..we have a memorial plaque in our church (All Saints Hindley) dedicated to Jimmy Prescott….we lay a poppy each year at 11 Nov and on 23rd his 40th anniversary will soon be here please take comfort that he is always in our prayers and we will never forget his sacrifice…God Bless

  6. James McCulloch

    Thank you for your service Warrant Officer Phillips and Staff Sergeant Prescott.

  7. PD

    I walk where ever I travel. I saw the memorial to Jim today and as a 25 year veteran was intrigued by the plaque so read this thread. Well done to his friends for the comfort you will have brought to his family. I have some memories of the Falklands and he truly was a hero. Rest well.

  8. Adrian Ross

    I had Jim as a Sgt/SSGT in 8tp 17 Const Sqn in Australia when he was on Ex Long Look in 1981. He was a very liked man and was a true Gentleman. It saddened the Sqn when we heard of his death but I still remember him and the Australian RAE that he was in his position in England by the name of Ross Chamberlin who has also passed away. Hope you both are having a drink in the Sappers bar with God serving you. RIP Boys

  9. Michael watkins

    Hello Angela Dolan . I was a corporal working in the gym at 12 r s m e reg. in 1982 . I knew your dad Jim but knew your mum better as she was our cleaner in the gym and office . I often think of her and your dad . When your mum told us that Jim was off to the falklands we all told her not to worry and that he would soon be home safe and sound . How wrong we were . Both Jim and wo 2 Phillips were very brave men . I saw a gardening program recently on t v where they were renovating mr Phillips garden with a Falkland based theme very interesting and brought back memories .

    So sorry to hear of your mums passing .

    Kind regards ,



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