British Guided Missile Destroyers Book Review
|Date of Review||July 2016||Title||British Guided Missile Destroyers|
|Author||Edward Hampshire||Publisher||Osprey Publishing|
|Format||48 pages, softbound||MSRP (USD)||$18.00|
For many folks, the face of modern naval warfare radically changed in May 1982.
That's when an Argentine Exocet struck the Type 42 destroyer HMS Sheffield during the brief, brutal Falklands War. Shots of the blazing vessel dominated worldwide news. And the popular press momentarily preoccupied itself with this purportedly novel naval menace.
Now Osprey recaps the service of Sheffield and other modern Royal Navy destroyers in British Guided Missile Destroyers – number 234 in the publisher's extensive 'New Vanguard' series.
Subtitled 'County-class, Type 82, Type 42 and Type 45', contents follow the publisher's proven prescription. After introductory notes on Britain's post-WWII naval strategy and threat picture, author Edward Hampshire outlines area- and point-defense ship-borne armament – both missile and gun systems, including supporting technologies.
Coverage then chronologically courses through the book's principal subjects:
- Type 82 destroyer: HMS Bristol
- Type 42: Sheffield-class
- Type 45: Daring-class
Sections outline design, development, construction and modifications. An 'Operational Service' chapter charts actions during peacetime, the South Atlantic War, Operation Desert Storm and combat deployments since 1991.
Photos, tables, extended captions and selected bibliography support author Hampshire's admirably indexed effort. Color profiles and action paintings offer plenty of artistic action. And a helpful table of British guided missile destroyer 'fates' neatly ties things up.
My sincere thanks to Osprey Publishing for this review sample!