The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (Princess Louise's)

'Sans Peur'       Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders red and white dicing       'Ne Obliviscaris'


A Snapshot of Service
in 'A' Company of the Argylls
Dhekelia, Cyprus 1958-59

Map of Cyprus
from the A&SH tray..........
Dhekelia, Cyprus, CO's orders. The Orderly Sergeant from Support Company was told to move some corrugated iron sheets from the camp perimeter fence. He didn't know how to spell it, so he wrote, 'Wu've tae move that riggly tin.'

Background Information

The Island of Cyprus is situated in the Eastern Mediterranean, 60 miles west of Syria and 40 miles south of Turkey. It is 60 miles broad by 140 miles long and is dominated by the Kyrenia mountains in the north which stretch along the 'Panhandle', and the Troodos Mountains in the south, with Mount Olympus being the highest point at 6,401 feet.

Cyprus was first occupied by Britain in 1878 and became part of the British Commonwealth. It is strategically important for access to the eastern Mediterranean, the Suez Canal and the middle east.

The Island is populated by two distinct ethnic groups comprising 17% Turkish Cypriots and 75% Greek Cypriots. The Turkish Cypriots mainly live in the North and the Greeks in the South of the Island.

The people depend on a rural agricultural economy, growing fruit, potatoes, carobs, olive groves and some wheat. There are no flowing rivers on the Island but dried river beds can flood to rapid torrents whenever there are heavy rainfalls. Farmers depend on deep wells or desalinated water for the irrigation of their crops.
 

Large tracts of the mountainous areas, such as Paphos and Troodos, are forested. Wild sheep known as mouflon, are found in the mountainous forest regions.

The Island has copper and iron mines which have been producing ore for centuries. Close to the Argylls first tented camp at Limni, were the important Limni Mines.

Dhekelia Garrison is about 5 miles north of Larnaca on the east coast of Cyprus. Under the London Agreement of 1959, the British were granted sovereign rights to establish Dhekelia as a military base.

The Argylls moved there in 1958 from their tented camp on the south west of the Island at Limni Mines in Paphos.

The Battalion's security duties remained the same, only the scenery was different. But there was now a sense of winding-down the scale of our operations as the Island prepared for peace, the cessation of terrorist activities by the Greek Cypriot EOKA, and the preparation for Independence from Britain.



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