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Type 42s as the backbone of the Royal Navy’s fleet

Type 42s as the backbone of the Royal Navy’s fleet
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For many years, the Type 42s have had a close relationship with the Falklands. That is why Falkland Islands Post has decided to release a set of postage stamps depicting 4 Type 42s that have had a particular association with the islands. According to info got by StampNews.com this philatelic issue consists of four items that were already put into circulation.

The return of HMS Edinburgh from the South Atlantic to her home port of Portsmouth in March 2013 marked the end of the operational life of the Type 42 destroyers. Type 42s have been the backbone of the Royal Navy's fleet since the first, HMS Sheffield, was commissioned in 1975. Edinburgh was the 14th and final Type 42 to enter service. As well as their aggressive capabilities, the Type 42 were capable of providing aid to civilian powers, disaster relief and many similar peace time duties that they were called upon to perform.

The Type 42s were light guided missile destroyers designed in the 1960's to fill the gap left by the cancellation of the larger Type 82s. The first ship of the class, HMS Sheffield, was ordered in 1968 and launched in 1971 by HM Queen Elizabeth II prior to being commissioned in 1975. In total 14 Type 42s were constructed for the Royal Navy.

These are headline events involving the Type 42s but their work through 4 decades involved a diverse range of tasks supporting British interests, from patrolling UK waters, to the Persian Gulf, the Caribbean, the Falklands and around the world. As well as their aggressive capabilities, the Type 42s were capable of providing aid to civilian powers, disaster relief and the many similar peace time duties that they were called upon to perform. They were busy on deployment all over the world right up until the end of their lives and their contribution has been immense.

On 6th June 2013 HMS Edinburgh hauled down the White Ensign in Portsmouth. The destroyer's Commanding Officer Cdr. Nick Borbone told those present.

"These are the final moments of HMS Edinburgh and the final moments of the Type 42 – a class which has served the Navy and the nation with distinction. This is truly the end of an era. There is no doubt that she is a great ship but it is the people who have made her".

Perhaps as many as 30,000 men and women have served in Type 42s since the first, HMS Sheffield, entered service in the mid-70s.

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