Royal Navy veterans launch £15k fundraiser for memorial honouring sinking of HMS Sheffield

VETERANS of a Portsmouth warship sunk during the Falklands conflict are hoping to raise £15,000 to pay for a new memorial honouring the ship’s destruction.

By Tom Cotterill
Friday, 14th January 2022, 4:55 am
HMS Sheffield after being hit in the Falklands
HMS Sheffield after being hit in the Falklands

HMS Sheffield was sunk almost 40 years ago, after being blasted by an Argentine missile.

Now, the men who served in three Royal Navy ships to bear the steel city’s names intend to create a focal point in the UK to meet and pay their respects.

The HMS Sheffield Association aims to drum up the cash by May, in time for the 40th anniversary of the sinking.

Bob Mullen, pictured front left as the chairman of Type 42 Association with Rear Admiral Philip Wilcocks. Picture: Allan Hutchings (151524-903)

The association – formed nearly 50 years ago to represent sailors of the Second World War cruiser, then the Type 42 and most recently the Type 22 frigate, built to replace the Falklands loss – has already had a scale model of the monument designed.

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North End navy veteran Bob Mullen was a 23-year-old Leading Hand (Radar) on Sheffield when she was sunk, on May 10, 1982.

He was desperate for the fundraiser to succeed and has urged everyone in the city to get behind it.

1982 The charred remains of HMS Sheffield

He said: ‘This isn’t just for us, this is for the families as well.

‘This new memorial will keeps a focus on what happened so it’s just forgotten until you come round to the big anniversary.

‘HMS Sheffield was a Portsmouth-based ship – the last British port in the UK it sailed from was Portsmouth.

‘It sailed for six months on a deployment and never made it back. Lots of the families of the people who died are residents in Portsmouth.’

Artist Peter Naylor has designed a stainless-steel bow of a warship, suitably engraved and set in a cast stainless steel dark, rough sea.

If the association hits its target in time, Mr Noble’s maquette will be turned into a full-sized monument to anyone who served in the three ships, which will be erected at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire.

A cross and memorial cairn already stand to the Shiny Sheff in the Falklands, rising above Sea Lion Island – the closest land to the spot where the destroyer was hit.

A monument in the UK would serve as a focal point for reunions, acts of thanksgiving and a chance to respect all those who’ve served in three generations of Sheffields to date.

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