"One of the most famous in Royal Navy history" - 16 incredible photos of HMS Sheffield

HMS Sheffield is one of the most famous in Royal Navy history, with the ships being named after the city of Sheffield in South Yorkshire.

The warships have carried fixtures and fittings created in the city – the stainless steel items inspired the nickname of the ‘Shiny Sheff’ for each ship.

The first HMS Sheffield, a town-class light cruiser, was launched in 1936 and saw plenty of action during World World Two, including missions to the Arctic Circle, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean.

She was also one of the pursuit ships that tracked down the German warship Bismarck after it sunk HMS Hood, the navy’s final battlecruiser. In 1967 she was sold and scrapped.

Four years prior the second HMS Sheffield was born as a Type 42 destroyer but she had a short life. In May 1982 she was badly damaged by Argentinian air forces during the Falklands War, and sank in heavy seas while being towed back to land.

The third incarnation was a Type 22 frigate which was sold to the Chilean Navy in 2003 and renamed Almirante Williams.

The ships have been used to defend aircraft carriers HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales.

Here are some of the historic photos of the three ships we have found in our archive.

Looking for the latest Royal Navy updates from Portsmouth? Join our new Royal Navy news Facebook group to keep up to date.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.